Everyone must know what to do and where to go in the event of an emergency. When the Smoke Detector goes off you and your family need to be able to exit the house quickly and safely!
Some tips for planning your escape.
- Draw a floor plan of your home – This is something that your children can be involved in. It would give them an opportunity to get to know the layout of their home and understand where all of the exits are.
- Include all possible exits – This includes windows and doors. Ensure that your family understands the dangers and limitations of all exits and any necessary items that may be needed to ensure a safe escape.
- Show two ways out of every room if possible – Ensure that your family knows their options so that in an emergency it only takes a moment to think in the event the main exit from a room is blocked.
- Does anyone need help to escape? – Knowing your family members and their limitations is key; whether a small child or elderly member ensure that those who need help are taken care of. When possible make their escape easier by having their bedroom on the first floor or close to an easily accessible exit.
- Choose a meeting place outside – Ensure that your meeting place is a safe distance from your house, within view of a main road if possible. Ensure that your meeting place is an obvious place next to a property land mark like a large tree standing alone. At the same time ensure that your location is safe and you do not put yourself on a main road where you may encounter traffic or unsafe conditions.
- Call the Fire Department from outside your home – Ensure that when calling 911 you do it from a safe location outside of your house and safe from danger. If you do not have a cell phone, run to your neighbours. Do not use the phone from inside your house in a dangerous situation.
- Practice Your Escape – Ensure to practice your escape and review your floor plan. Have your practices from different locations in your house and at different times during the day as you are not always in the same room. Ensure that your practices are realistic and most of all safe. Have everyone meet at the designated place.
- Get out and Stay Out – In the event of an emergency when you are forced to exit your house remember that once you are out stay out. Call 911 as soon as possible and stay out of your house. There is nothing in your home that is worth risking your life for.
REMEMBER: GET OUT! STAY OUT!
Calling 911 – If you have an emergency please do not call your neighbour or someone you may know who volunteers on the local Fire Department. Precious time is being wasted, especially if the person you are trying to contact is not home.
Once you are safe call 911. Try to leave your line open so that emergency services can call you back whether on your cell or at the neighbours if required.
Always memorize your home 911 [street] number, especially when visiting someone’s house. Nothing is more frustrating for emergency services than not having an exact address. We want to be able to get to you as quickly as possible.