How to Develop Your Family’s Fire Escape Plan

Smoke rising up to a smoke detector on the ceiling, stressing the importance of developing your family’s fire escape plan During a fire, there’s no room for hesitation. Some families may feel overconfident about their preparedness for such an event. When it comes to fire safety, many are only aware of the bare essentials, and many more don’t even have an escape plan. Despite the precautions you may take to ensure an accidental fire doesn’t break out, factors beyond your control can trigger a blaze. That’s why it’s so important to improve or develop your family’s fire escape plan so that every member is aware of their role.

Developing Your Family’s Fire Escape Plan

Doing everything you can to protect your family from unexpected fires starts with developing a plan. Some steps to consider when making your plan include:

  • Map the Home’s Exits: Obtain a floor plan of your home and circle all the exits. Also, mark any areas that are higher risk for fire, such as the laundry room or the kitchen.
  • Designate a Meeting Place: Determine an area outside the home where everyone should meet in the case of a fire. This can be the end of the driveway, at a particular tree, or near the mailbox. Ensure its a place where your family can be easily seen by emergency responders.
  • Elect a Point Person: Select an adult willing to help the children and elderly with limited mobility during a fire. This will deter any confusion about whose role it is to help these family members.

Once you establish the plan, consistently practice it. Run a regularly scheduled fire drill, and if you have children, incentivize them to correctly execute the plan by rewarding them. Also, during practicing, ensure family members are staying low to avoid smoke inhalation.

Fire Safety Equipment for Your Home

Once you figure out your fire escape plan, you must ensure you have the tools to safely execute it. A fire can start almost anywhere, from the heating appliances throughout your home to cigarettes or candles. Perform a home checklist to ensure the following safety equipment is easily acceptable in your home:

  • Smoke Detectors: Smoke detectors are essential to have in your home. Make sure there’s at least one working smoke detector on every floor of your home and outside every bedroom. Be sure to test the alarms at least once monthly and replace the batteries once or more a year.
  • Fire Extinguishers: If you catch a fire at an early stage, a fire extinguisher can put out the flame. It’s also useful for putting out flames blocking escape routes. Ensure extinguishers are placed near high-risk areas, such as in the kitchen, and replace them when expired.
  • Fire Escape Ladders: This is a tool few houses own. If you own a multilevel home, a fire can start on the first floor, which bars the escape of those upstairs. By having a fire escape ladder easily accessible, those on higher floors can escape via the window.

While these items will help you in the event of a fire, you should also take extra precautions to protect an accidental fire. Some additional measures you can take include installing a stainless-steel liner in the chimney and placing your gas grill an adequate distance from the outside of your home.

While a house fire is a rare tragedy, taking these steps to develop your family’s fire escape plan can help protect your family if your home unfortunately falls victim to this disastrous event. Beyond protecting your family, you can rest assured that your personal property will be covered by your insurance policy. TJ Woods Insurance is well-practiced in pairing clients with a homeowners policy or renters insurance best suited to meet their needs. If you would like to know how to protect your family from the financial repercussions of a fire, contact us today.