How To Prepare For A House Fire
More than 2,500 people die from house fires each year and
over 2,600 are injured in the US.
House Fires Dangers
- Smoke Inhalation
- Inhaling super-hot air of a house fire can sear your lungs.
How To Prepare For A House Fire
Knowing how to prepare for a house fire
and taking all the right precautions to protect yourself and you
loved ones can
give you peace of mind. You should plan and make preparations
well in advance of the house fire.
Equipment & Supplies You Need
Buy these items well before you have a house fire.
- Emergency power generator (Emergency
- Survival kit/ bug out bags (Executive 72-hour Kit with Solar Upgrade)
- Only purchase fire fighting and fire prevention
equipment that has been evaluated by a nationally
recognized laboratory, such as Underwriters Laboratory
Make, stock up or verify the fully stocked status of each of your
- Car back pack, car first aid kit (first
), auto tool kit (tool
- Emergency evacuation backpack
- Food emergency kit
- Dog/pet emergency kit
- House Fire emergency Kit - (72-hour Survival Kits) Make sure your
house fire kit includes:
Flashlights & extra bulbs, Battery-operated radio, Battery-operated
lanterns, Batteries (in different sizes!), Matches, First aid kit, Duct
tape, Rain gear,
Clock (wind-up or battery-powered), Plastic garbage bags, Fire
extinguisher, Scissors, Can Opener, Clean clothes, Extra blankets, Heavy
Make a house fire escape plan. Know when and what you are going
to do in advance of an oncoming house fire.
Make a family communications
Identify and pre-plan house fire
evacuation routes. Determine
where you would go and how you would get there if you need
to evacuate. Make sure there are two ways out of each room.
Have a free house fire home inspection performed on you
house to identify weakness and deficiencies in your house.
You may qualify for a discount from you home insurance
Make sure each member of your family knows what to do no
matter where they are when an house fire occurs.
Establish a meeting place where you can all reunite
Make sure all family members know where your gas,
electric and water main shutoff valves are and how to turn
Identify your closest fire and police stations and
emergency medical facility.
Coordinate your emergency house fire plans with your
TAKE Red Cross First Aid and CPR Training Course.
Suggested Fire Drill Practice -
Starting at various locations in you house, feel your way out of the house in the dark or
with your eyes closed.
Make sure everyone in the house
knows how to unlock and open each window and door.
Teach children not to hide from firefighters
and rescue personnel.
Prepare Your House
- Inspect and operate each window and door in the house periodically. Make sure that windows
and doors are not stuck.
- If your windows and doors have security bars make sure they have
operable quick release devices to allow them to be opened immediately in
Update important documents and place in a portable and fireproof
container. As backup, scan and save your documents on a flash drive, website
other secure storage system and store in a safe location. Update or take new pictures of yard, house, house contents and car
contents and backup computer files. Email important documents to self or a friend.
- Photo copies of prescriptions
- Emergency preparedness manual
- Photo identification
- Proof of occupancy of residence (utility bills)
- Medical history or information
- Waterproof container for document storage
- Back-up disks of your home computer files
- Camera & film & spare batteries for camera
- Insurance, medical records, bank account numbers, Social Security card,
copy of will, family records
- Important telephone numbers and contact information
- Inventory, pictures and receipts of valuable household goods
During The Fire
- If there is heavy smoke in the house, crawl under the smoke to an
- Exit the house immediately when you hear the smoke detector.
- If you encounter a closed door as you exit the house feel the door
and door knob first to see if it is hot or warm. Find another way out
because there is fire on the other side.
- If you see smoke coming from the cracks in the doorway or below the
closed door, find another way out.
- When you open a closed door, open it slowly and be prepared to close
it quickly. Expect fire on the other side.
- Tell firefighters if there are pets inside the house.
- If you become trapped and cannot get out, call 911, close the door
and do everything you can to prevent smoke intrusion into the room.
(tuck clothing under the door, close/block vents, tape doorway cracks).
Call and signal for help any way you can.
- If your clothes catch on fire, stop, drop, and roll to put out the
-Stop immediately, drop to the ground, and cover your face with your
-Roll over and over or back and forth until the fire is out.
- If someone else is on fire, smother the flames with a blanket or
towel or force them to stop, drop and roll.
- Use cool water to treat the burn immediately for 3 to 5 minutes.
Cover with a clean, dry cloth. Get medical help right away by calling
9-1-1 or the fire department.
After The Fire
When you re-enter your house,
use care and watch out for any structural damage cause
by the fire or water.
Notify your insurance company.
Take pictures, lots of pictures
of your damaged property.
Conduct an inventory of your
property. Do not throw away any damaged goods until
after an inventory is made and your insurance company is
Retrieve you valuable documents
If you can't stay in your home,
notify police that the home will be unoccupied.
Save and document all fire loss
expenses (for insurance and income tax purposes).
If you have a mortgage on your
house , notify your mortgage company of the fire.
Wear protective clothing and be
cautious when cleaning up.