Have you ever felt the dread upon witnessing flames pouring out of windows and black smoke billowing towards the sky? Even if you don’t know the person who owns that particular home, you wonder if it could ever happen to you. Unfortunately, it can happen to anyone, which makes fire prevention extremely important in any home. With roughly two minutes to escape to safety, you need to know what to do if a fire occurs. Fire prevention could save your life or the lives of your family members.

Have Fire Extinguishers

Each level of your home needs a fire extinguisher, including the basement and attic. Review instructions on how to use your extinguishers once a year so you’re ready in an emergency. If you want to make sure you’re using it correctly, contact your local fire department or fire protection systems New York. Be aware of how dangerous the fire is before you try to fight it on your own. Keep your back to a door and remember the PASS acronym, which means pull the pin, aim low, squeeze the handle slowly and sweep side to side.

Have Smoke Alarms

Working smoke alarms are necessary to prevent deaths from fire. They should be installed in each bedroom and outside the bedrooms and be checked monthly. Every 10 years, the alarms should be completely replaced. To avoid false alarms near the kitchen, keep the smoke alarm about 10 feet away.

Have an Escape Plan

Create a plan and practice how you will escape from your home if a fire occurs. Have an escape route from every room and, if on the second story, have fire ladders available for use. Teach your family to roll out of bed and stay low to the floor to avoid smoke and higher heat levels. Tell them how to test doorknobs with the back of their hand to check for heat. Finally, practice the “stop, drop and roll” method to put out fire on clothing and ensure every person in the house knows how to call 911.

A few other ideas for fire prevention are to check electrical outlets and replace if needed, use space heaters safely or avoid using them, practice safety in the kitchen, notice gas smells, keep items away from your furnace and be cautious around the holidays, especially with turkey fryers and holiday lights. Even though house fires are fairly common, you can keep your family safe through preparation and practice.