Our 13 Hottest Home Fire Safety Tips

A sharp beeping noise jolts you awake.

You look at the time. 3:54 am. It’s not your alarm clock going off… it’s your smoke alarm.

Would you know what to do in this situation? If you’re like most people, probably not.

We want to change that.

And since October is National Fire Prevention Month, it’s the perfect time to plan to be prepared.

Read on for what your plan should include.

This Is Not A Drill 

A recent Red Cross survey shows that:

  • Fewer than 50% of respondents have a home fire escape plan in place.
  • Only 25% have practiced their plan.

Those are startling figures, especially when cool heads are needed when the pressure heats up.

So, if you don’t have an escape plan, make two. You need to have a backup if one of your routes is impassable.

And once you’ve made your plans, practice them at least three times throughout the year, including the middle of the night. You’ll likely only have two minutes – at most – to escape, so every second counts.

Test, Test

Would you spend $10 to protect the lives of you and your family?

How about 10 minutes a month?

These figures are the cost and time needed to install and check your smoke alarms. Tiny, insignificant amounts.

But the consequences of ignoring them can be very significant:

That’s why our friends at PuroClean recommend to have carbon monoxide and smoke alarms on each floor, including the basement.

It’s one of the easiest, most affordable things you can do to save lives.

Put It Out

While more than 95% of homes have a smoke alarm, only 75% have a fire extinguisher.

And in those homes, only 87% of people know how to use it. That’s like buying a 5-speed getaway car and not knowing what the clutch does!

Our advice: If you don’t have a fire extinguisher, buy one. And if you have one, make sure everyone of an appropriate age learns to use it. That way, more than one person has the ability to put out a out a small, contained fire.

Turn It Off

It’s not surprising most fires happen in the kitchen.

But the second leading cause might not be so obvious: Getting cozy.

Space heaters result in more than 25,000 fires and 300 deaths each year.

Fireplaces? Another 25,000 fires and millions in property damage.

Even candles are a culprit, causing 150 deaths per year.

Now, there are safer ways to warm up (like putting a hot water bottle under your sheets). But it’s tough to beat the feeling of a crackling fire, the glow of a candle, or the on-demand warmth of a space heater.

Here’s how to enjoy all of those safely:

  • If you use a space heater, upgrade to one with a timer.
  • Before you use your fireplace for the first time this year, have a professional inspect the chimney flue.
  • If you light a candle, pretend it’s your birthday and blow it out before you leave the room.

That’s S’more Like It

Though nothing says fall quite like a bonfire, one wayward spark and the night can go up in flames… literally.

But there are a few easy precautions you can take to keep the good times going:

  • At the very least, have a hose or large bucket of water nearby.
  • Never build a fire under cables, wires, trees, or near structures.
  • Don’t light your bonfire until wind gusts are under 10 mph.

And, of course, buy extra marshmallows.

If You Do Need to Call the Fire Department…

After they’ve taken care of the danger, as soon as you’re safe and sound, call us at 800-766-MMIC (6642).

We’ll start the claims process to get you back on your feet immediately.