With colder days arriving, we tend to spend more time indoors where it is warm. While you turn up the heat, including space heaters, candles and fireplaces, make sure you don’t inadvertently increase the risk of a devastating fire in your home. Here are some important fire prevention tips to keep your home safe and warm.
1. First and Foremost: Check Your Fire Alarms
No one expects to have a fire in their home and hopefully it will never happen to you but fires do happen causing extensive damage and sadly loss of life. Many lives could have been saved if a fire alarm sounded and gave them warning to get out. Make it a habit to test your fire alarms monthly just by pressing the test button to be certain they are actually working. Mark your calendar to change the batteries once a year and vacuum the alarms at least once a year to remove any dust build-up.
2. Smoke Alarms on Every Floor is the Law
In Ontario, it is required by law to install fire alarms on every floor of your home, especially outside of bedrooms or sleeping areas. The same law applies to landlords, who must ensure their rental properties have working fire alarms on every level of each rental unit.
3. Plan Your Escape
The large majority of deaths due to fires occur in homes during the night while people are sleeping so you need to practice how you and your loved ones would escape quickly in the dark. Smoke inhalation is especially deadly so crawling to the closest exit is advised. For more information about being prepared to escape, visit the Canadian Fire Safety Association site for details.
4. Practice Fire Prevention in Your Home
There are many simple things you can do to prevent fires from starting in the first place, such as:
- Never leave food cooking in the kitchen unattended
- Never leave candles burning unattended
- Be sure candles are completely extinguished after using them
- While using a fireplace or wood-burning stove, be sure to have fresh air coming into your home
- Don’t run wires or extension cords under carpets
- Use the right type of holiday lights for their intended purpose: indoors or outdoors
Even a small kitchen fire can cause a lot of smoke damage so steps taken to prevent fires and avoid insurance claims are well worth the effort.
Save Money on Home Insurance
Besides saving lives, some fire prevention steps can save you money on your home insurance. For more information or if you have any questions, contact the insurance experts at Mitchell & Whale Insurance Brokers at 1-800-731-2228 or firstname.lastname@example.org. We’d be happy to help.