What steps can you take to protect your home and family from a fire?
According to theNational Fire Protection Association (NFPA), a home fire occurs every 85 seconds. In 2013, fires resulted in 3,240 deaths, 15,925 injuries, and an estimated 11.5 billion in direct property loss.
Since it’sFire Prevention Week, we’re offering these home fire safety tips:
1. Test Your Smoke Detectors
Smoke detectors are your first line of defense against fire. The NFPA recommends that you test all smoke alarms in your home at least once a month. Be sure to install smoke alarms inside and outside each bedroom and sleeping area, and install alarms on each level of the home including the basement. Replace all smoke alarms when they are 10 years old.
2. Know Your Escape Plan
Create a map of your home showing all doors and windows. Make sure that you know of two ways out of each room. Pick a meeting place outside, in front of your home, where all family members will gather. Review your home fire escape plan with all family members, and be sure to practice the escape plan at least once a month.
3. Swap Out Your Candles
Candles are a simple way to create ambiance in your home, but (as with any sort of open flame) they can quickly become deadly if you are not careful. Switch out your traditional candles for battery-operated alternatives like LED candles, which are safer and more efficient. You can even find scented varieties!
4. Review Your Insurance Policies
If disaster does strike your home, you don’t want to be left unprepared. Contact your insurance agent and review your options for renter’s insurance or homeowner’s insurance. Make sure that you fully understand your coverage and the procedure for filing a claim. If necessary, update your policy to reflect any changes to your home. Ask your insurance agent about applicable discounts for using smoke detectors!