Prevention and Safety

Fire Prevention is a function of many fire departments. The goal of fire prevention is to educate the public to take precautions to prevent fires, and be educated about surviving them. It is a proactive method of reducing emergencies and the damage caused by them. Many fire departments have a Fire Prevention Officer.

Lessons of Fire Prevention

Fire prevention education can take the form of videos, pamphlets, and banners. Often, the messages and lessons are simple tips. Effective and important lessons and messages include:

Stop, drop and roll

If your clothing catches on fire, the most effective method of extinguishing the fire is to stop, drop to the ground, and roll back and forth to smother the flame.

Don’t run around because it fans the flames

Smoke detectors save lives

  • Working smoke detectors reduce the chances of death in a fire by half.
  • Nearly 900 lives could be saved annually if every home had working smoke detectors.
  • Even just one smoke detector reduces the chances of death by almost half.
  • Nearly half of all fire survivors remember hearing their smoke alarm.
  • Deaths due to fire have decreased by half since the invention of the smoke detector.
  • Most deaths due to fire occur at night when people are sleeping.

Smoke detector maintenance

  • The most common cause of smoke detector failure is missing or disconnected batteries.
  • Nuisance alarms are the most common reason for deliberately disconnecting batteries.
  • Missing, disconnected, or dead batteries account for 73% of smoke detector failures.
  • There are more homes with no working smoke detectors than there are homes without any smoke detectors at all. There are millions of homes in each category.
  • Smoke detectors should be installed on every level of your home.
  • Change your batteries twice a year.
  • Clean your detectors also.
  • Replace the entire unit every ten years.
  • Disconnecting your batteries, for any reason, is dangerous and illegal.

Smoke detectors are just a start

  • Smoke detectors only wake you up.
  • Never assume that someone has already called the fire department, or that it was automatically notified.
  • Know tonight what you will do if you are ever woken up by your smoke detectors.
  • Make sure your family and friends know also.
  • If you change your batteries, wake up and evacuate immediately you are a hero to your family, friends, and firefighters.

Don’t Just Leave to Do Something Else

One of the most common reasons for fires is how people often leave stoves, ovens, toasters, clothing irons, barbecues, and candles unattended. Therefore one must always be aware when using the aforementioned appliances.

Get out and stay out

Each year, many people are injured or killed because they reenter their burning homes. If you are lucky enough to have escaped, stay out.

Firefighters are your friends

One of the most critical jobs of a firefighter is search and rescue. For young children, it is important that firefighters are seen as people they can follow and trust. A firefighter in firefighting gear breathing with an air tank can be scary. One way a child can get used to or trust a firefighter is seeing a firefighter dress up step by step seeing that it is a person inside. Also being able to walk up and touch the firefighter can reassure the child that he or she is a real person. (This has already been implemented by many fire departments across the US during Fire Prevention Week.)

Don’t play with fire

Playing with fire causes many unnecessary emergencies, and hurts and kills many people, and is a leading cause of forest fires.

False alarms kill

False alarms waste valuable manpower and resources, which may be needed desperately at a real emergency. Also, any time firefighters ride trucks, they are at risk. Eighteen percent of firefighter deaths occur while responding to calls.