Modern Mississauga and the Mississauga Fire and Emergency Services have come together to present an ongoing series called “Fire Tip Friday” where we'll share tips on how to prevent fires in and around your home.
Today’s tip is on the importance of having an escape route from your home during a fire.
As part of your spring cleaning, you tested your smoke and carbon monoxide alarms, changed batteries where needed and replaced alarms that were older than 10 years. You feel prepared. You pat yourself on the back. Tragically, a fire starts in the downstairs living room of your home while you sleep soundly in your bed on the second floor. Your alarms wake you. Where are the kids? Did your son fall asleep in front of the TV again? Your daughter had to work late. Is she home yet?
An emergency situation is not the time to develop a fire escape plan. Every member of your household needs to help develop and practice the plan to ensure it is effective in real-world situations.
In the event of a fire, you have seconds to escape and get outside. Having a home escape plan in place is essential to ensuring that everyone gets out alive.
How to make the Great Escape
1. Sit down with everyone in your home and discuss how each person will get out in a fire. PRACTICE YOUR ESCAPE PLAN with everyone in the home.
2. KNOW TWO WAYS OUT OF EACH ROOM, if possible. Make sure all doors and windows leading outside open easily.
3. HELP THOSE WHO NEED IT! Determine who will be responsible for helping young children, older adults, people with disabilities or anyone else who may need assistance.
4. HAVE A MEETING PLACE OUTSIDE, a safe distance from your home. In case of fire, everyone should go directly to this meeting place to be accounted for.
5. CLOSE DOORS behind you as you leave.
6. GET LOW AND GO UNDER THE SMOKE to the nearest safe exit. Most fire deaths are the result of smoke inhalation.
7. GET OUT, STAY OUT. When the smoke alarms sound, get out immediately and call 9-1-1 from outside using a cell phone or from a neighbour’s home. Never re-enter a burning building.
Can firefighters find you? Make sure that your home address is always visible to emergency responders as this will help them find your home quickly and as easily as possible.
Fire prevention is everyone’s responsibility. To ensure you understand your role in keeping your family and home safe, I will share simple steps that will help us decrease the number of fires in Mississauga. Fires are preventable but it’s up to you to take action.
– Tim Beckett, Mississauga Fire Chief
If you have any further questions about fire safety, please contact Mississauga’s Fire Prevention Office at 905-896-5908 or firstname.lastname@example.org and follow us on Twitter @MississaugaFES.