We’ve gone over Preventing Fires but now we want to talk about what to do when there is a fire. Having a solid plan of getting out and staying out is highly important. Setting up escape routes, meeting places and not going back inside can mean the difference in life and death. Children need to be reminded fairly often of what to do in the case of fire. Sadly many children will try to hid from fire out of fear. The more we teach them, the more likely they will be to remember what to do.
We suggest having a family meeting and drawing out escape routes and meeting places. The meeting place should be somewhere easy but away from the house. Everyone needs to know two ways to get out of every room in the house and how to know which one to use. Be sure you are keeping escape routes clean, clear and clutter free. Decide on a meeting place where you will all meet up once out. Once you get out, stay out! This needs to be stressed to younger children who may want to go back in looking for a parent or favorite item.
If you click on the grid to the right, you can download the Home Fire Escape Plan from Sparky over at nfpa.org. Map out your house, include doors and windows and mark two ways out of every room. If there are infants/small kids who don’t understand, pets or elderly household members, assign someone to be in charge of helping them out. Do not put a child in charge of this.
Fire and smoke spread quickly, they need to act quickly. If they see a fire or hear the alarm they need to shout “FIRE, FIRE” and find their easiest escape. Children should NEVER attempt to extinguish a fire. If someone is trapped or unable to get out, they need to know to get out and call 911 or have a neighbor call for help.
Children need to know:
- What to do if they see fire
- What to do if they hear the fire alarm
- 2 ways out of each room
- Get low
- Get out and STAY OUT
- Where to meet up
- Do not stop, go back or look for anything
- STOP, DROP & ROLL if necessary
Help children know that Firefighters are Friends and they shouldn’t be afraid. Read more HERE.
Reproduced from NFPA's Fire Prevention Week website, www.firepreventionweek.org. ©2014 NFPA
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