Fire deaths are up by 144 percent in Michigan so far this year. What can you do to protect yourself? The Michigan Fire Marshal and Licensing and Regulatory Affairs Agency (LARA) recommend several safety measures in order to prevent a fatal house fire.
Working smoke alarms throughout your home: Smoke alarms may reduce the risk of fatality by up to 60%. If deaf or hard of hearing, a device with flashing lights and/or one that shakes the bed is advisable.
Fire escape plan: Practice with all residents of your home to ensure it works, and keep all individuals’ mobility issues in mind. Each room should have two possible exits. Make sure windows can be opened and crawled out of, and agree on a safe outdoor meeting place. Most importantly, get out and stay out!
Carbon monoxide (CO) detectors: Install one on each level of your home, and never use the oven or range as a heater. Also advisable is sleeping with bedroom doors closed to slow or prevent spread of fire, smoke and toxins like CO.
Smoking safety: The leading cause of fatal fires in Michigan is smoking. It is always best to smoke outdoors, and NEVER in bed. Use caution to completely extinguish cigarettes before disposing of them into the garbage where they could ignite.
Use space heaters with caution: Do not use space heaters next to curtains, bedding or upholstery. Do not plug any other device into the same outlet as a heater as it may cause overheating.
Fire fatalities are often preventable if we follow these important safety measures. Don’t forget to ensure that your loved ones – especially older relatives, friends and neighbors – are also taking these precautions.
Visit the LARA website for more tips and information.