Getting Ready Things To Do Incase Of Fire ~ Kwentology

How To Stay Safe in a Fire?

Do you know what to do if you smell smoke in your home? Most people don't. That's the point of Fire Prevention Month, held every year early March (summer vacation). During the month, firefighters teach people about fire safety.

The leading cause of home fires are candles (petroleum lamp) left unattended, cooking, faulty electrical connection. The biggest cause of home fires is candles left to burn specially during brownout or power failure. A candle or kerosene improvised lamp can start a fire if it is placed too close to objects that can burn. If you cook, stay in the kitchen while food is on the stove. Turn off the stove if you leave the kitchen. Kids can help prevent fires by not playing with matches or candles. And don't get too close to anything that can burn you.

In case of fire, it's important that everyone in your family knows what to do to stay safe. Here are some tips.

Plan Ahead

  • Your family should draw a map of you home (a blueprint) that shows the fastest ways out of every room, especially the bedrooms. Babysitters should also know these paths.

  • Place emergency numbers next to every phone. Emergency Code 117 or 112 for Philippines (911 U.S.A.) in cellphones.

  • Test all smoke alarms once a month. Make sure there is one every level of your home. Put new batteries in smoke alarms every year, and replace the alarms every 10 years.

  • Clear all exit routes in your house. Take things off stairs and make sure doors and windows open easily.

  • Pick a meeting place outside your home where family members get gather after they leave the burning building.

  • Hold fire drills when everyone is home and hold them at different times of the day

Image of Firefighters while difusing the burning building by Donsruins.

During a Fire

  • If there is a fire, crawl or roll to the door of your room. To check if the fire is near the door, feel the doornob with the back of your hand and the cracks around the door is warm, you may have to get out another way, like through a window.

  • To exit from an upper window, you need a portable escape ladder. All upper-story bedrooms should have escape ladders. Don't practice climbing down one in a drill. They should only be used in emergencies. If you don't have a ladder, hang a white or light-colored sheet out the window. That will alert firefighters that you are in the room.

  • Smoke rises, so get out of the house by bending down or crawling to the exit.

  • Close all doors behind you.

  • Never stop to take anything useful with you during a fire.

  • Never go back into a burning building.

  • When you're outside, call the fire department or emergency number. Ask for help.

Image of Dalmatian as Firefighters by MR38

Did You Know?

Dalmatians aren't just cute black and white spotted dogs in Disney movies. They have long been watchdogs of firehouse. The reason? Fire engines were once driven by horses. Dalmatians form a close bond with horses and would protect them from horse thieves.

Image of Firefighters Gear by Merp

Getting into Gear

Firefighters need a lot of protection when they go into a burning building. A hundred years ago, firefighters wore wool pants and skirts. Today's firefighting clothing, called turnout gear, provides better insulation. Firefighters wear several layers: One resists heat up to 1, 200 °F, another is water resistant, and a third is fire-resistant. The gear is so effective, firefighters sometimes don't realize how hot a fire is. New gear is solving that problem. The clothing comes with sensors that warn the firefighter when temperatures in the building are dangerously high.

All firefighters wear helmets, and early versions were made of leather and later aluminum. Nowadays, high-tech helmets are resistant to heat, flames, and electricity. They cover the ears and neck and have a shield that covers the face.

Firefighters can lose their way in the heavy smoke. GPS devices help guide them to fellow firefighters who are missing. If a firefighter passes out from the smoke, small motion devices will set off alarm when no motion is detected. A new type of camera allows firefighters to see in dark and smoke-filled areas. The camera senses differences in temperatures, so users can detect how hot an object is or where a person is located. It can let a firefighter know if the room is ready to ignite in flames or if a floor has become weak from heat.

Hot stuff!

[spoiler title="Interesting Fact"]


Benjamin Franklin formed the first volunteer fire company in America in 1736, in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Of course, he was also the first fire chief.

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