|Fire Safety Tips|
|Monday, 07 March 2011 10:45|
Every year 5,500 Americans die in fires and more than 30,000 are injured. Most fire deaths occur in the home, and many can be prevented. Fire safety procedures save lives. The City of Vicksburg Fire Department works to keep citizens informed and practiced in fire safety training. To protect yourself, it's important to understand the basic characteristics of fire.
Fire spreads quickly; there is no time to grab valuables or make a phone call. In just two minutes a fire can become life-threatening. In five minutes a house can be engulfed in flames. A fire's heat and smoke are even more dangerous than the flames; inhaling the super-hot air can sear your lungs. Fire produces poisonous gases that make you disoriented and drowsy. Instead of being awakened by a fire, you may fall into a deeper sleep. There are numerous steps that you can take to avoid or help reduce your chances of falling victim to fire:
Install smoke detectors. Place detectors on the ceiling or high on the wall of every level of your house: outside bedrooms, at the top of open stairways, at the bottom of enclosed stairs, and near (but not in) the kitchen. Clean and test smoke detectors once a month and replace batteries at least twice a year.
Install ABC-type fire extinguishers in the home and teach family members how to use them.
Plan two escape routes from every room in your home or office. Choose a place outside for everyone to meet after escaping from a fire. Have a practice fire drill at least once a year.
Teach children how to report a fire and when to use 911.
Keep a whistle in each bedroom to awaken the household in case of a fire.
Teach family members to stay low to the floor (where the air is safer) when escaping from a fire.
Teach family members never to open doors that are hot. In a fire, feel the bottom of the door with the palm of your hand. If it is hot, do not open the door. Find another way out.
Make sure windows are not nailed or painted shut.
Have a collapsible ladder on each upper floor of your house.
Safeguard your home against fires by keeping storage areas clean, checking wiring and outlets, and using caution with flammable liquids and materials.
By following these tips, you can greatly improve your ability to survive a fire should one occur. For more information on ways you can protect yourself and your family from fire, stop by the City of Vicksburg Fire Department main offices, located at 1630 Walnut Street, between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. Monday through Friday, or call the Fire Prevention Bureau at (601) 634-4566.
|Last Updated on Monday, 11 April 2011 08:35|