In a fire, seconds count. Seconds can mean the difference between escaping safely from a fire or having lives end in tragedy. That’s why this year’s Fire Prevention Week theme: “Every Second Counts: Plan 2 Ways Out!” is so important. It reinforces why everyone needs to have an escape plan.
Practice your plan, have fire drills, teach children how to escape on their own in case you can’t help them, close doors as you leave as this may slow the spread of smoke, heat and fire. And once you get outside, stay outside. Never go back inside a burning building.
Fire Prevention Week has been observed on the Sunday through Saturday period in which October 9 falls since 1922. It is the longest running public health and safety observance on record. It was established to commemorate the Great Chicago Fire, the tragic October 8-9, 1871 conflagration that killed more than 250 people, left 100,000 homeless, destroyed more than 17,400 structures and burned more than 2,000 acres.
According to NFPA statistics, half of all U.S. home fire deaths occur at night between the hours of 11:00 pm and 7:00 am when people are most likely sleeping. Having smoke alarms in the home cuts the risk of dying in a fire in half but they need to be installed in all the required locations, including bedrooms. The leading cause of home fires continues to be cooking, while smoking is the leading cause of home fire deaths.
Even the most conscientious stable managers should be ever mindful of the precautions that can be taken to prevent a fire loss. According to the NFPA, the leading cause of barn fires is heating equipment and electrical malfunction. Be prepared for emergency evacuation.
Have an emergency plan and follow it. This is a good time of the year to review your fire prevention check list and do whatever you can to prevent a disaster. With Halloween, winter and the holidays approaching, be aware of other leading causes of fires – candles, chimneys, and space heaters. Smoke alarms save lives. Make sure yours are working.
Contact Blue Bridle if you have any questions about farmowners insurance or if you want to review your coverage.
Portions of this article reproduced from NFPA’s Fire Prevention Week website, www.nfpa.org.