TweetKids under the age of five are at twice the risk of dying in a residential fire than those in other age groups, according to the U.S.
Heat sources—including matches, lighters, and other items commonly found in homes—are the leading cause of fire-related deaths in kids under the age of five. Smoke alarms serve as a first alert, letting your family know there’s imminent danger and providing a few moments warning for you to enact your fire safety plan. Your local fire department may also offer child safety kits, including window decals to alert first responders to the rooms in which your kids may be sleeping. Take a tour of your local fire station to familiarize your kids with fire fighters in uniform. There are many precautions you can take in your home to reduce fire hazards and keep your kids safe.
During your fire escape practice, use multiple scenarios and practice rescuing infants via multiple methods. Consider installing an automatic fire sprinkler system in your home, especially if you have an infant or toddler.
The Stop, Drop and Roll technique – Stop moving, lie down and roll if clothing catches fire. Never leave children unattended around any fire hazard, including cooking stoves, candles, portable heaters, or any other heat source.
If you’re unable to evacuate the home because fire has taken over all available exit routes, stay put.
If your kids’ clothing has caught fire and they aren’t able to stop, drop and roll, quench the flames with blankets or towels. Babies are often too young to recall a home fire, but younger kids are cognizant enough that a devastating fire can cause significant emotional problems after the event. Young children have a difficult time fully grasping the concept that things can be replaced, but people cannot.
Even if your child wasn’t present when the fire occurred, sudden uprooting of the living environment and the loss of favorite blankets or stuffed animals can cause confusion and distress.
The best way to keep your kids safe is to prevent home fires from happening in the first place. By teaching your kids about fire safety, formulating and practicing a fire escape plan, following fire prevention practices and preparing your children for the proper actions during a fire, you’re doing everything you can to keep them safe from a home fire. The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) is a leading authority on firefighting rules, regulations, and industry standards. The ratings assigned to different fire extinguishers have a purpose of communicating the effectiveness of an individual fire extinguisher in putting out a fire.
Different types of fires are classified by different letters primarily relating to the fuel associated with each fire.
The number associated with the classification rating on the fire extinguishers is a direct relationship in the overall effectiveness of that fire extinguisher against that particular class of fire.
The rating of a fire extinguisher is a tested objective evaluation done by Underwriters Laboratories. And two-thirds of all homes in which fires result in the death of a child under five years old aren’t equipped with working smoke alarms. While you can take steps to reduce fire hazards, there’s little that can be done to predict and prevent a random wiring malfunction that could lead to a devastating fire.
If you don’t have smoke alarms installed, your local fire department may offer them free or at a reduced cost. You should also change the batteries every six months, at minimum, to ensure adequate operation. This lets them quickly locate and retrieve your child from a burning building, drastically increasing their chances of survival. Teach them that fire fighters are friendly heroes – this prevents them from shying away or even running away from fire fighters in hazardous situations.

Invite your local fire station to your home to help you devise the most efficient escape routes. While prevention isn’t a 100 percent guarantee, following safe practices can reduce the risk of a devastating fire. This is especially important in the kitchen, where dish towels, sponges, paper towels, and other items can catch fire if placed too close to a hot stove. A candle can fall for a multitude of reasons, lighting carpets, curtains or furniture ablaze. Even responsible children can accidentally light a fire if they encounter a lighter or match and try it out of curiosity.
You should always have a fire extinguisher in the kitchen, for instance, as it’s a common location for fires to occur from cooking and other hazards. These gadgets pick up on electrical arcs, usually caused by poor insulation or loose wires or connections, and halt them before they lead to fires. A great find in your parent’s attic might seem like a money-saver, but old appliances weren’t manufactured up to par with modern safety standards.
Portable oxygen is 100 percent pure oxygen, making it extremely flammable – in fact, it’s explosive and makes fire burn hotter and faster.
Wood stoves, coal stoves, oil furnaces and any other heat source should be regularly inspected, cleaned and maintained.
This slows the time it takes for smoke from hallway fires to enter the room, leaving more time for firefighters to rescue young kids. It should be far enough away from the structure that you will be safe if the building collapses, but close enough that your kids can get there easily. In addition to the door, find an alternate escape route, such as a window that leads to a neighboring roof or a window with a collapsible ladder for escaping from upper-story windows. These devices detect fires and activate sprinklers, which can help douse flames and provide a few extra critical minutes or seconds to evacuate the home. Teach toddlers and young kids to stay at least three feet away from any common heat source or hazard in your home.
If possible, teach your toddler to lie on the floor while shining the flashlight towards the window. If possible, immediately treat the burns with cool water for three to five minutes and cover with a clean, dry cloth until help arrives. Kids must cope with the loss of their familiar home and their most prized possessions, and in the worst cases, possibly the death of a sibling, parent, or another loved one.
Toddlers may experience fear, confusion and insecurity in the days, weeks and even months after a home fire.
House fires can have devastating physical and emotional consequences, and the effects on young kids can be especially difficult to overcome in the aftermath. Even if it seems like you’re being overly cautious, every precautionary step you take could be the one that saves your child’s life. The NFPA also recommends at minimum one portable fire extinguisher for each level in all private residences. Many newer homes have smoke alarms that are both hard wired to the homes electrical grid, and a battery back up. The rating itself have a reference to the type of fire in which they can be used and a numerical evaluation on the effectiveness against that type of fire. Most fire extinguishers are effective against multiple classifications of fires and have separate rating associated with each type of fire. There is said to be a relationship in the area of a fire that a fire extinguisher can extinguish and it rating. The things that directly affect the ratings of the fire extinguisher are primarily the size or mass of the agent which is expelled, the speed of agent expulsion, and the agent effectiveness itself. You can also opt for wireless alarm systems that are interconnected, sounding all the alarms in the home for better notification of a problem in one area of the home.

They will also check your smoke alarms and fire extinguishers, and can even point out fire hazards in your home that you weren’t aware of. Fire Administration also keeps The National Fire Department Census Database, which lists all fire departments registered with the USFA, along with addresses and basic information on each department.
But it’s also important in all areas of your home – blankets and clothing piled up against a heat run, for instance, can also pose a fire hazard. Over time, lint and other particles can build up in the vent system or dryer cabinet (where the heating element is located) and potentially cause fires. If your garage contains a workshop, where even a thin layer of sawdust is present, and a heating appliance – whether a portable kerosene heater, wood stove, coal stove or anything else – there’s a fire risk.
But if you must, ensure that it’s a certified appliance and keep any combustible objects and materials at least three feet from the appliance. For children younger than three or those not able to adequately follow detailed instructions, you’ll need a more comprehensive escape plan. This keeps your kids as low to the ground as possible, where the least amount of smoke and gas has collected, while still alerting rescuers to his location. Install a smoke alarm on every level of your home and be sure to mark their locations on your EDITH plans. As a rule of thumb, the larger the number, the more effective that fire extinguisher can be against a given fire and the larger fire it can handle. Among the thousands of children killed or injured in home fires each year, about 40 percent are under five years of age. Even simple precautions that seem like overkill can make the difference between keeping your kids safe through fire prevention and a deadly fire occurring in your home. This Old House recommends having your dryer cabinet professionally cleaned every two years. Only use K-1 type kerosene in a kerosene heater, and check with your local authorities to find out if it’s legal to use them in your area. If you’re navigating your escape route with a baby, hold the infant securely under your body with one arm. If you and your baby or toddler are trapped, use the flashlight to alert rescue crews to your location through the windows. Firefighters are trained to look next to a child’s bed first upon entering a room, ensuring that they will find your child quickly – providing a few more valuable seconds to get your toddler outside safely. There are several options for portable extinguishers and they all have vastly different fire fighting properties and capabilities.
Protect your family and have Home Hazard Prevention inspect your home for this, and other hazards, which you may not even be aware that exist in your residence.
Because kids of this age aren’t as capable of exiting a home or understanding the dangers of fire risks, parents must take extra precautions to reduce fire risk in the home and prepare comprehensive safety and evacuation plans to ensure their children escape safely. This provides a shield for your baby if something should fall on top of you, and also keeps your infant as low as possible to the ground to avoid smoke and gas inhalation. The ratings in class B and C fires are more related to the square footage and a different type of fire. Make sure to replace all of the batteries at the same time, not just the battery form a single unit. Smoke alarms themselves should be replaced after 8 years of service, or as recommended by the manufacturer. Without the proper knowledge and training, this essential life saving equipment is useless in your hands.

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