Home Fire Escape Planning

Home Fire Escape Planning Information

Each year there are millions of fires, thousands of deaths, tens of thousands of injuries, and billions of dollars lost to fire. Residential fires account for 70% - 80% of all civilian fire deaths in the United States. To reduce your risk of becoming a statistic, use the following to safe guard your home and family.

Install and Maintain Smoke Alarms

Smoke alarm tips:
  • Change the battery in your smoke alarm twice a year when you change the time on your clocks.
  • Check out the Smoke Alarm page to learn more about how to receive free smoke alarms and installation and maintenance tips.
  • Install a smoke alarm on every level of your home.
  • Install a smoke alarm outside of every sleeping area.
  • Test your smoke alarm monthly.

Draw an Escape Plan of Your House

Escape plan tips:
  • Have a primary and a secondary escape route from every area.
  • Include all doors and windows.
  • Select a safe meeting place outside your home and show it on your plan.

Practice the Plan with Your Family

Practicing tips:
  • First, walk through your plan.
  • Practice your plan at least twice a year.
  • Alternate between day and night, primary and secondary escape routes.

Get Out and Stay Out

If you smell smoke, see fire, or hear your smoke alarm, follow your escape plan and do the following:
  • Feel the door with the back of your hand. If the door is hot, do not open it. Instead, use your alternate exit, such as a window.
  • Get low and crawl to avoid the dangers of heat and smoke.
  • Never use elevators. Instead, use the stairs.
  • Once out you're out, stay out.

Go to Your Safe Meeting Place

Gather at your designated meeting place and ensure your entire family is accounted for. Notify the first arriving fire company that all members have been accounted for. If not, tell them how many persons are missing, their approximate ages, and the location they were last seen.

Call for Help

When your family is gathered at your meeting place, send one person to a neighbor's house to call the Fire Department. Call 911, stay calm, give the operator your address, and relay the nature of the call. Stay on the line until the operator tells you to hang up.