We all know the signs that Autumn has arrived: flocks of geese and ducks flying over the lakes and rivers; school buses carrying kids off to class, and leaves turning from green to gold to red.
We pack away the swimsuits, shorts and sandals, and bring out the sweaters and slippers. It’s time to start thinking about snow skiing rather than water skiing.
The change in season also means we’ll be turning up the thermostat, using our fireplaces, and perhaps adding a portable heater to a particularly chilly area in the house.
But before it gets too far into the season, we ask you to take a few minutes to ensure your family is safe and everyone knows what to do should a fire break out in your home.
- Keep items that can catch on fire at least three feet away from anything that gets hot, such as space heaters.
- Never smoke in bed.
- Talk to children regularly about the dangers of fire, matches and lighters, and keep those items out of reach. Always keep a three-foot perimeter between small children and open flames.
- Turn portable heaters off when you leave the room or go to sleep.
- Ensure that all household members know two ways to escape from every room of your home.
- Make sure everyone knows where to meet outside in case of fire.
- Practice escaping from your home at least twice a year and at different times of the day. Did you know that only 26% of families have practiced escaping from their home? Make sure your family knows what the fire alarm sounds like, knows to crawl along the floor and meet outside in a designated area should a fire alarm sound. And make sure everyone knows how to call 9-1-1.
- Teach household members to STOP, DROP and ROLL if their clothes should catch on fire.
- If smoke, heat or flames block your exit routes, stay in the room with doors closed. Place a wet towel under the door and call the fire department or 9-1-1. Open a window and wave a brightly colored cloth or flashlight to signal for help.
The Red Cross Preparedness Fast Facts - Fires page provides a fire prevention and safety checklist to help you ensure you are Red Cross Ready. And check out the Safety Information tab on the Clark County Fire District 6 site to learn more about preventing apartment (and home!) fires, safe practices when burning candles, and guidelines home heating and carbon monoxide safety.
SW Washington Chapter