Fire safety is a serious matter that affects thousands of American households each year. The most upsetting part of this statistic is that many of these fires are preventable.
The leading causes of house fires are cooking- and heating-related, making the winter months prime time for such accidents to occur. So, right now is a great time to conduct a home safety assessment and review some fire safety tips to help protect your family and property from a house fire.
Not sure where to start? Use the home assessment checklist below to identify ways that you can improve your home fire safety.
- Smoke Detectors
- Ensure that smoke detectors are installed on each level of your home, especially inside bedrooms and outside of sleeping areas.
- Test all fire alarms monthly, change their batteries yearly, and replace them after 10 years.
- Heaters and Appliances
- Maintain all of your heating sources, such as stoves, furnaces, and fireplaces, to keep them clean and working properly.
- Have your fireplace chimneys and flues professionally cleaned and inspected every year.
- Never leave your stove, space heater, or fireplace unattended.
- Keep flammable items at a safe distance at all times.
- Fire Extinguishers
- Keep a fire extinguisher in your kitchen and another one next to your fireplace.
- There should be one fire extinguisher on each level of your home.
- Ensure that every capable person in your family knows where the fire extinguishers are and how to use them.
- Other Flame Sources
- Never leave a burning candle unattended.
- Always place candles on sturdy surfaces at least a foot away from anything flammable.
- It’s best to step outside to smoke, but if you smoke inside, never smoke in bed.
- Make sure cigarette butts are completely out before placing them in a trash can.
- Never smoke near a medical oxygen device.
- Power Cords and Wires
- Do not place wires underneath rugs or in highly trafficked areas.
- Fix any frayed or exposed cords and wires.
- Avoid overloading your extension cords and outlets.
- For more tips on how to protect your electronics and prevent fires during a lightning storm, check out our storm safety tips.
- Educate Your Family
- Teach your children about fire safety, but keep lighters and matches out of their reach.
- Create a fire escape plan so that your family knows what to do in the event of a fire. Practice the plan at least twice a year.
Following this fire assessment checklist can reduce your fire risk, but sometimes accidents can still happen. In the unfortunate event that you and your family are one of the thousands of households that are affected by fire damage, Electronic Restoration Services is here to help.
Did a house fire damage more than just your appliances and electronics? For help restoring your artwork after a house fire, check out our sister company, Art Recovery Technologies.