How to Survive and Fire Proof Your Home
The facts about house fires in America and Indiana
House fires are extremely dangerous and often preventable. To understand the seriousness of the situation let’s take a look at some facts.
5th Leading Cause of Death in Indiana: Based on hospital discharge data for the years between 2003 to 2006 more than 2% of all hospitalizations were outpatient visits totaling to $71 million in hospital bills. This does not include property damage, insurance premiums and other financial costs.
3rd Most Common Cause of Home Related Deaths in U.S.: People at most risk are aged 65-years and older and children younger than 6-years old. The CDC also has data showing most residential fires occur during the winter months and half of fires occur in homes without smoke alarms.
Cooking and Smoking are the Primary Cause of Residential Fires: Residential fire or burn injuries result from hot food or beverage preparation and hot great exposure. In 2004, people who smoked in a home caused 92 burn related deaths in Indiana.
How to prevent and survive a house fire
Enclose Cooking Areas: Make sure to keep your cooking area enclosed. Meaning, cook around block or some other non-combustable surface.
Build or Purchase a Home Built with Non-Combustable Material: A block or brick home is perfect for many reasons. It is more sturdy than a wood home, lasts longer, better at retaining hot and cold temperature and has a higher resale value. If a fire breaks out, it will be enclosed in a controllable area instead of rapidly spreading through the house.
Tune Up Electrical Systems Every 10-Years: By using your home’s electrical system properly you will stop a house fire from breaking out. Do not put electrical cords underneath carpet or rugs, do not overload outlets and do not charge smartphones or laptops on carpets, beds or sofas. Make sure to unplug items from outlets before you go to bed. Not only could it save your life but will save you money on your electric bill. Make sure to use extension cords properly and use the correct light bulbs.
Know the Warning Signs of Electrical Problems: If you notice any of the following warning signs make sure to call your local fire department immediately If you are witnessing frequent blown fuses, tripped circuit breakers, flickering lights, bulbs wearing out too fast, shock or a tingle when touching a switch or outlet or unusually warm or faulty switches.
Do Not Use Candles: Candles cause 2% of reported home fires and that includes 3% of home fire deaths. On average 23 home candle fires are reported each day. Candles are an open flame. Tip a candle over and it can start a fire very fast, especially if it falls on carpet, wood or gas. It is best to not have candles in the house at all. The risk outweighs the benefits.
Use Smoke Alarms: For every $1 spent on smoke alarms a homeowner saves nearly $69 in fire related costs and $21 in medical costs. Install both ionization and photoelectric or dual sensor smoke alarms. Make sure to test the batteries once every few months and replace batteries with non-replaceable 10-year lithium batteries. Every 10-years replace your fire alarms for optimal security.
Do Not Cook With Grease: Many people cook with oil but make sure you do not use too much oil or cook the oil too long and it becomes grease. Grease fires are the number one cause of house fires. An average, 471 home cooking fires happen per day. Make sure to attend your cooking at all times.
Keep Matches and Lighters Away From Children: Children are curious. If you look at the facts above, you will see that children under the age of 6-years old often can cause a fire. Children are exploring their world and fire is one of those things that peak their curiosity.
Stop Smoking In Your Home: Why smoke in your home? You can not get rid of the smell, it lowers the value of your home and is one of the leading causes of house fires. If you do smoke in your home, make sure you dispose of your cigarettes and NEVER smoke in bed.
Make a Fire Action Plan: If a fire does break out in your home you will want to have a fire action plan. It will save lives. For a fire exit plan that will help you and your family, make sure to read this article by Ready.Gov
How to fire proof your home
Call The KING’S Mitigator and let our uniquely qualified professionals who have worked as insurance agents and water-mold and fire mitigation specialists to inspect your home. We will give you a thorough evaluation of your home.
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