How To Make a House Fire Escape Plan
If there’s a fire in your home, your ability to get out depends on a few factors. Having a fire escape plan could be the difference between life and death. You should make the plan with everyone in the home, so you all know what to do and practice it regularly.
Fire can spread rapidly in the house, so you will have very little time to get out once your smoke alarm rings out.
This post will give you details to help you make a fire escape plan, and what to do the second you know there’s a fire in your house.
How To Prepare
There are several things you must ensure before you begin to make your fire escape plan. These include the following:
- Install functional smoke alarms. Test them weekly. Replace batteries at least twice a year.
- Look for any fire hazards and remove them if possible.
- Have a night-time routine to minimise the risks of a house fire.
Why Make a Fire Escape Plan?
We all think a fire will never happen in our house, but you should always be prepared because accidents happen. Without a plan, you will not know what to do, and in a terrifying moment like that, you will panic, causing it to impact your judgement. It is best to have a plan that you can carry out so that you and your family get out safely.
How To Make Your Fire Escape Plan
Your fire escape plan should be put into action when your fire or smoke alarm goes off. This means there is a fire in your house somewhere. No matter how small it is, you should carry out your fire escape plan.
In your fire plan, you should include the following steps:
- Raise the alarm. Wake everyone in the house up and get out as soon as possible.
- Keep your doors, halls and exits clear at all times.
- Before exiting a door, check it with the back of your hand. If they are warm, do not enter as there is fire on the other side.
- Only open doors if they are needed to escape from the house.
- Crawl on the floor if there is smoke. The air will be cleaner down low.
- Put a reminder of your fire escape plan on the fridge or a notice board if someone forgets any detail.
- Under no circumstances should you look for the cause of the fire. You should be focused on getting out.
- Set an assembly point outside your home where everyone can meet. You can then tell if someone is not out.
- If anyone in the house has any mobility issues or babies, you should assign someone to assist them in an emergency. There should also be a backup person in case they are not at home.
- Call the emergency services on 999 or 112 from a mobile. If you do not have a mobile, call to a neighbours house.
- Once you are out, stay out and wait until the fire brigade tells you it is safe.
When heading to sleep, you should carry out a night-time routine. Most fire accidents happen at night when people are sleeping, and you should take steps to make sure your home is safe and minimise the risks of any fire accidents.
Your night-time routine should include the following:
- Keep all hallways clear before you go to bed. You don’t want to be falling over objects when escaping.
- Close every interior door. The fire will struggle to get out of the room if the door is closed. Or at the least, it will buy you some time.
- Make sure keys are kept in a safe place where everyone can get them.
- Ensure fires are put out or are nearly out before you sleep.
- Do not leave any devices such as TVs on standby.
- The only appliances that should be left on are appliances designed to be on at all times, such as fridges and freezers.
- Unplug your phone charger when you go to bed. Do not leave it charging at night.
- Blow out any lighting candles.
- Ensure gas appliances are switched off.
- Make sure your escape route is clear so that nothing will slow you down.
What To Do If Your Clothes Catch Fire
If your clothes have caught fire, you will be in a pure panic trying to get them out. Just remember to ‘stop, drop and roll’. To further explain it, this means to:
Stop – do not run. It will make the flames worse.
Drop – lie on the ground as soon as possible.
Roll – Preferably on a fire blanket or a heavy fabric. Simply rolling on the ground will help too to put out the flames.