What would you do if a fire broke out in your home?
Do you have an escape plan, know what to grab and how to keep your family safe?
What??s the most important thing you can do to make sure you??re ready for a fire?
Assistant Fire Prevention Officer Matthew Bunton said it??s important to make sure you have a working smoke detector and have an escape plan, especially for in the middle of the night.
He recommends you have clothes and shoes by your bed that you can grab quickly.
??I don't know how many calls we worked in the middle of the night where summertime, wintertime, (doesn??t) matter. They??re standing barefoot,?? said Bunton. ??And, that could become an issue for the occupant.??
Bunton said overall the most important thing to do is just get out of the house and call the fire department.
Many people want to go back in the house for one more thing, but Bunton says it??s not worth it.
??As far as pictures, heirlooms and personal possessions, they??re not worth your life,?? said Bunton. ??Don??t go back in after them. That??s what we??re here for. After we put the fire out, we??re going to take every effort to try and save as much of your property as we can.??
He said it is important to have two ways out of every room.
If there is a fire in your home, check the door for heat with the back of your hand. ??
??Smoke will overwhelm you quickly,?? said Bunton. ??Even we fight fire with bunker gear and air packs. Get low on the floor and crawl. You don??t want to trip over anything.??
Bunton said if you live on the second floor, you can buy an escape ladder that hooks over the windowsill.
If you don??t have a ladder try to take something like a towel or blanket and seal the crack under the door and make some noise, toss something out the window to let somebody know you??re in there.
And lastly, but very importantly, make sure you know how to use the fire extinguisher.
Bunton said it??s important to make sure the gauge is in the green and that it??s not over or undercharged.
??Make sure the cylinder is not dented or rusted. Also make sure the pin is secure in it,?? Bunton said. ??We need to check all this at least once a month.??
Firefighters have a clever way for you to remember how to use the fire extinguisher it??s called PASS: pull, aim, squeeze and sweep side to side.
If you??ve called 911 and decided that you can fight the fire and have located a way out behind you, then pull, aim, squeeze side to side, starting at the base of the fire.