Some information related to being prepared for emergencies:
General Points on Fire Safety—Some Do’s and Do Not’s
- Plan for a safe refuge in case you cannot escape from the house. This is a room where all of the family can gather to wait to be rescued. Take the following precautions:
- Make sure there is a phone in the room to call for help
- Try to have a room with a window so you can either escape or call out for help (stay by the window)
- Close the door and seal the bottom with towels or blankets to stop harmful smoke entering
- Call emergency services #911
- Tell the operator what service you require
- Speak calmly and clearly giving the address of the fire and your phone number – if using a mobile phone the operator may ask what community you are in – Only hang up when the operator tells you to.
- Re-enter a burning house for personal items
- Borrow batteries from the smoke alarm
- Have mirrors over fireplaces with real fires
ROUTINE FIRE SAFETY CHECKS
- Unplug all unnecessary electrical appliances
- Turn off all unnecessary gas appliances
- Make sure all candles and naked flames are extinguished
- Place a spark-guard in front of any open fire
- Empty all ashtrays
- Are all escape routes completely clear of obstructions?
CHECK YOUR SMOKE ALARM TODAY!
- Smoke is a silent killer; within minutes toxic gases can leave you disorientated, drowsy and unable to escape from fire!
- Check you batteries today!
GENERAL TIPS ON SMOKE ALARMS
There are two types of smoke alarm “Ionisation” and “Optical”
Ionisation smoke alarm – is the cheapest and most common type. It is very sensitive to small particles of smoke from ‘flaming’ fires like chip pans. It will detect this type of fire before the smoke gets too thick.Optical smoke alarm – is more expensive, but more effective at detecting larger particles from ‘slow burning’ fires such as smoldering foam or PVC wiring.
How many smoke alarms do I need?:
- For maximum protection one smoke alarm per room (except bathroom, kitchen and garage)
- For minimum protection one smoke alarm for each level/floor of your home.
Where do I fit them?
- On the ceiling as close to the center of the room as possible
- Keep in mind your ability to hear the smoke alarm at night with the door closed.
Know your Evacuation Plan!
- The purpose of a smoke alarm is to give an early warning of an outbreak of fire! It is vital that you and your family know exactly what to do when the Smoke Alarm activates.
Facts on Smoke Alarms:
- On average 46 people die in fires nationally every year. Tragically most of these deaths could have been prevented if a working smoke alarm had been present in the home.
- A national survey, carried out recently, on smoke alarm ownership found that there are over 300,000 households who do not have any smoke alarms installed!
- Smoke alarms do not prevent fires!
- Most fires happen at night when people are asleep and smoke does not always wake people up but can actually put them into a deeper sleep.
- Smoke alarms do not put out fires.
- Smoke inhalation, not heat or flames, causes the majority of fire deaths and the smoke given off by some furnishing materials can kill very quickly.
- Ten year smoke alarms are available as Ionisation or optical alarms and are fitted with a long life lithium battery or a sealed power pack that lasts for ten years.