On average each year, Portland Fire responds to 70,000 emergency incidents, including fires. Most fire deaths occur in the home. Did you know that with modern furnishings, you have very little time to escape.
Years ago when home furnishings were made of cotton and other natural products we did have more time to escape. Unfortunately today, almost everything is made of some form of plastic or synthetic material. These are all forms of petroleum products (think solid gasoline). Based on recent quantifiable tests done by nationally recognized experts, a small fire in a home today will grow out of control in two minutes or less. The conditions throughout the entire home could be untenable in less than seven minutes.You can protect yourself and family by using some simple tactics:
- Get smoke and carbon dioxide detectors for each floor of your house and smoke detectors in each bedroom.
- Test your detectors regularly. We test ours every Christmas and Fourth of July
- Sleep with your bedroom door closed. That will prevent smoke from getting into the room.
- Develop an escape plan.
- Practice the plan at night with your children and teach them how to crawl low and close doors behind them.
- Never go back into the house.
Early detection (smoke detectors), fire escape plans (with appropriate practice) and the importance of getting out quickly and staying out are the keys to survival.