Below are topics that should be covered during your home fire escape planning session:
- Consider how you would escape from a fire in every room of your home and be sure to have two ways out, as the fire may block your main exit.
- If you must escape through a bedroom window, it is important that you remember to close the bedroom door before opening the window. This step will block airflow to the fire and provide you with protection from heat and smoke as you exit.
- Make sure all of your windows open properly and that everyone in your home knows how to unlock and open the windows.
- Consider purchasing an escape ladder to exit through a second story window.
- If a smoke alarm sounds and there is smoke in the house, everyone needs to exit the home as quickly as possible and meet at a pre-designated meeting spot away from the house, such as a mailbox, a large tree, or a barn. Only call 911 after you have exited the home.
- If people are sleeping in a bedroom and the fire is in the living area downstairs, it is going to make using the front door as an exit impossible. Gather your family members into a bedroom and close the bedroom door. Open the window, push the screen out and escape through the window using a portable escape ladder.
- If your family doesn’t have an escape ladder and needs to go out a second floor window to escape, it is important to remember that homes often have windows that you can exit onto front porches, roofs or balconies. The fire department has ladders and can get you down from there. Be sure to identify these rooms with windows during your escape planning process. That way if a fire occurs you can move to those rooms, close the door, and then open the window and escape.
- If a bedroom window will not open and you need to escape from a fire by going out the window, first make sure the bedroom door is closed. Next, find an object or a piece of furniture that can break the glass. Use that object to clear all the glass out of the window frame before climbing out the window.