Fire Drill!

By on July 8, 2013

The safety and stability of our family, home, and pets is the number one priority in our lives. Accidents happen every single day, and it’s the job of parents and loved ones to protect their children and families.

By making better choices, safer decisions, and thinking smarter, we reduce the risk of being in harms way. Not to say that we can control every single thing that happens in life, but we certainly can control our own lives.

One of the biggest “accidents” that causes fatalities, and exponential amounts of damage is a house fire. The thought of all that we worked for being burnt to a crisp is heartbreaking. According to the National Fire Protection Association, there was an average of 366,600 home fires between the years of 2007 – 2011.

These fires were the cause of an average of 2, 570 deaths, and over 13,000 injuries. Over $7 billion in damages were recorded. These numbers are both scary, and sad. Most fires are started because of carelessness, laziness, or a lack of safety awareness. These tragedies could potentially be avoided if people choose to learn the right information and take necessary steps of precaution in their homes.

So How do these fires start, and how can we try and prevent them?

The causes of fires in the home vary from cooking incidences, smoking devices, lit candles, faulty wiring, or unattended electrical devices that are left plugged into outlets.

Although it’s a rarity, electrical fires caused by faulty wiring can cause a severe house fire. Most people remember the basic safety do’s and don’ts when it comes to fires…don’t leave candles lit and unattended, don’t leave your hair curler plugged in, watch the stove when you cook, etc.

But what about the dangers that you can’t see? It’s crucial to have the wiring in your home checked by a professional electrician at least every couple years. Maintaining and keeping watch on the electrical components in your home is important to keeping a safe environment.

One simple fix when having wire work done in your home is to include heat shrink tubing around your wires. This simple yet innovative device adds security to your home in one simple step. The tubing adds solid protection to the live wires by keeping out moisture, dust and debris, and keeps them bound in an organized fashion. Always discuss the best options with your electrician and home professionals, and don’t ever be afraid to get a second opinion.

Cooking accidents account for the leading cause of household fires. Families enjoy gathering in the kitchen to spend time with one another, cook together, have a beautiful dinner with each other, or entertain guests. Preparing food can be a dangerous game if proper safety precautions are not taken.

Make sure you choose the right cooking equipment when preparing you dinner. Never wear loose clothing around an open flame, do not ever leave an open flame or hot stove unattended, clear away towels, pot holders, or other items from the hot area.

Many people become so busy in preparing their food that they don’t realize where they place utensils or flammable objects. ALWAYS be aware of what you are doing! Never leave something close to an open flame or hot surface!

If grilling will be your preferred method of cooking, always make sure you are using the grill at a safe distance from children, guests, the house, the lawn, or any other area that is filled with people. Don’t ever cook with the grill up against the house, deck, wall, etc.

Utilize long grilling utensils, and periodically clean off the fat and food residue from the grill racks as you cook. Keep a low heat/flame, and use fire starting chemicals to a MINIMUM. Always turn your propane tank OFF after using the grill.  And never, ever use the grill indoors!

Most fires are reported between the hours of 11pm – 7am. So whether you’re making a late night snack, having a romantic evening with illuminating candle walkways, or styling your hair for a night out on the town, always make sure that you take the precautions necessary to  keep your home safe from falling victim to the flames.

Although these are the most common hours for household fires to begin, a fire can happen at ANY time. It’s your job to research your best safety options, keep your housing up to date and checked, practice methods of safety with your family, and always be weary of what you are doing in your home when it comes to heat or fire. Remember, accidents happen, but the choice of safety is always in your hands.

Although cooking is an enjoyable experience for everyone, it also requires the appropriate means of caution so that it can be a safe experience as well. It’s important to teach and practice these precautions with your family and children so that everyone in your home can lead a safer life.

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Creative writer who loves to travel and cook delicious meals for friends and family

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