Fire Safety Checklist
These Are Simple Changes That Could Save Your Life
- Change Your Smoke Detector Batteries
Fire experts nationwide encourage people to change smoke detector batteries at least annually. An easy way to remember to change your batteries is when you turn your clock back in the fall. Replace old batteries with fresh, high quality alkaline batteries, such as energizer brand batteries, to keep your smoke detector going year-long.
- Check Your Smoke Detectors
After inserting a fresh battery in your smoke detector, check to make sure the smoke detector itself is working by pushing the safety test button.
- Count Your Smoke Detectors
Install at least one smoke detector on every level of your home, including the basement and family room and, most important, outside all bedrooms.
- Vacuum Your Smoke Detectors
Each month, clean your smoke detectors of dust and cobwebs to ensure their sensitivity.Replace Your Smoke Detectors
Smoke detectors have a life expectancy of 10 years. Older smoke detectors may be to sensitive and give false alarms or not sensitive enough and may not warn you when needed.
- Change Your Flashlight Batteries
To make sure your emergency flashlights work when you need them, use high-quality alkaline batteries. Note: Keep a working flashlight near your bed, in the kitchen, basement and family room, and use it to signal for help in the event of a fire.
- Install Fire Extinguishers
Install a fire extinguisher in or near your kitchen and know how to use it. Should you need to purchase one, the Newport Fire Department recommends a multi-or all-purpose fire extinguisher that is listed by an accredited testing laboratory such as Underwriters Laboratory.
- Plan and Practice Your Escape
Create at least two different escape routes and practice them with the entire family. Children are at double the risk of dying in a home fire because they often become scared and confused during fires. Make sure your children understand that a smoke detector signals a home fire and that they recognize its alarm.
- Change Your Clock, Change Your Battery
The Newport Fire Department urges you to adopt a simple, potentially lifesaving habit: change the batteries in your smoke detector when you change your clocks back to standard time in the fall.
Consider The Following:
- Each day, an average of three kids die in home fires - 1,100 children each year. About 3,600 children are injured in house fires each year. 90 percent of child fire deaths occur in homes without working smoke detectors.
- Although smoke detectors are in 92 percent of American homes, nearly one-third don't work because of old or missing batteries.
- A working smoke detector reduces the risk of dying in a home fire by nearly half.
Fire Safety Tips for the Bar-B-Q
There are three types of grills on the market.
- Propane gas grills which use propane tanks.
- Natural gas grills which use gas piped in from your house.
CAUTION: These two types of grills are not interchangeable. Make sure all fittings are tight, and there is adequate ventilation.
- Charcoal grills which use charcoal briquettes and lighter fluid.
Ten Safety Tips
- Read all instructions before using your grill. Note safety, operation and handling instructions.
- Clean grill thoroughly before and after using. This is to avoid grease build up that can cause flare-ups and/or fire. NEVER put lighter fluid directly on flames!
- Keep all grilling activities away from buildings, houses and garages.
- Use all grills outdoors. Never grill inside houses, garages or on wooden porches.
- Store all lighting fluids away from children.
- Have a multipurpose A-B-C fire extinguisher, a garden hose, bucket of water or sand nearby.
- Keep all children and pets away from grilling area (at least 5 feet in all directions).
- Never leave cooking unattended.
- Use proper grilling utensils for safe handling.
- Use only fluids recommended for charcoal grilling, and dispose of charcoal properly in a metal container dowsed with water. Check cooking area for proper extinguishment.
Fire Safety Hazards
How many of these hazards can you eliminate in your home?
If you answer "NO" to at least one of these questions, then the time for action is NOW.
- Have you removed all combustible rubbish, leaves, and debris from your yard?
- Have you removed all waste, debris, and litter from your garage?
- If you store paint, varnish, etc., in your garage, are the containers tightly closed?
- Is there an approved safety can for the storing of gasoline for the lawn mowers, snowblowers, and snowmobiles, etc.?
- Do you keep your basement, storerooms, and attic free from rubbish, oily rags, old papers, mattresses, and broken furniture?
- Is there a sufficient number of metal cans with lids for rubbish and combustible debris?
- Are stoves, broilers, and other cooking equipment kept clean and free of grease?
- Are curtains near stoves arranged to prevent their blowing over the burners or flames?
- Are members of the family forbidden to start fires in stoves or fireplaces with kerosene or other flammable liquids?
- Do you always see that your portable space heater is placed well away from curtains, drapes, furniture, etc.?
- Are all of your electrical appliances including irons, mixers, heaters, lamps, fans, radios, television sets, and other devices "UL" listed?
- Do all rooms have an adequate number of outlets to take care of electrical appliances?
- Have you done away with all multiple attachment plugs?
- Are all flexible electrical extension and lamp cords in your home in the open? ( None placed under rugs, over hooks, through partitions or door openings)
- Do you keep matches in a metal container away from heat and away from children?
- Do you extinguish all matches, cigarettes, and cigar butts carefully before disposing of them?
- Do you see to it that there are plenty of noncombustible ash trays in all rooms throughout the house?
- Are all members of the family instructed not to smoke in bed?
- Do you know that the number to the Newport Fire Department is 911?
- Do you have a home escape plan in case of a fire?
- Do you hold home fire drills at least once a month?
- When you employ babysitters, do you instruct them what to do in case of a fire?
- Did your entire family take part in completing this checklist?
- Do you at least have a smoke detector on every level of your home, and within 15 feet of your bedrooms?
Portable Fire Extinguishers
When used properly, portable fire extinguishers can help save lives and property. They are also useful in containing small fires until the fire department arrives.
Portable home fire extinguishers are not designed to extinguish large or spreading fires. Even against small fires, they are useful only under certain conditions. Before using a portable fire extinguisher, be sure the fire department has been notified. A few things to remember are.
Fire Extinguishers ARE designed for:
- Small fires
- Confined fire areas
- People who have read the directions earlier
Fire Extinguishers ARE NOT designed for:
- Large fires
- Rapidly growing fires
- People who are unfamiliar with fire extinguisher use
Fire extinguishers come in different classes. Know what is on fire and use the proper extinguisher.
WARNING! Using a fire extinguisher on the wrong class of fire can MAKE THE FIRE WORSE!
When a fire occurs always:
- First notify 911, and sound any alarms
- Evacuate immediately
- Rescue anyone in danger
You can try to use a fire extinguisher if you...
- Know the fire is small and confined
- Keep a clear escape route. Don't let the fire get between you and the exit
- Stay low, below the smoke
- If you have any doubt, leave the area
- Leave if fire grows out of control
- Close door to contain fire before you leave
- Wait for the fire department's permission before you re-enter the area
- Attempt to extinguish a large or rapidly growing fire
- Fight fires without an escape route
- Fight fires in a smoke filled room
- Fight fires if you are in doubt
- Assume the fire is out. Wait until the area is inspected by the fire department.
Ignoring any of these steps can be dangerous and fatal.
Carbon Monoxide Detectors
Who needs a CO Detector?
Single Family Residences.
A single family residence, heated by a forced air furnace or a boiler that burns a fossil fuel , should have a carbon monoxide detector within fifteen (15) feet of all rooms used for sleeping. The carbon monoxide detector should be placed so it will be easily heard in all sleeping areas and should be installed according to manufacturers instructions.
Multiple Family Dwellings & Apartment Buildings.
A multiple family dwelling or apartment building, in which a hot water or steam boiler, that burns a fossil fuel and is located in the basement, should have one approved carbon monoxide detector installed in the room containing the central heating unit. The carbon monoxide detector should be installed according to manufacturers instructions.
Every apartment that has its own warm air heating plant (portable furnaces, space heaters, etc.) that burns a fossil fuel, should have a carbon monoxide detector within fifteen (15) feet of all rooms used for sleeping. The carbon monoxide detector should be placed so it will easily be heard in all sleeping rooms and should be installed according to the manufacturers instructions.
What is Carbon Monoxide (CO)?
Carbon monoxide (CO) is a odorless, colorless gas produced by burning fossil fuels (Fossil fuels shall include natural gas, coal, kerosene, oil, propane and wood etc.) Exposure to lower levels of CO over several hours can be just as dangerous as exposure to higher levels for a few minutes.
Who is at risk?
Those most at risk are:
- People with lung or heart disease.
- Pregnant woman.
Signs and symptoms of CO poisoning include:
- Nausea, Vomiting.
- Dizziness, Confusion.
- Trouble breathing.
If prolonged exposure continues, LOSS OF CONSCIOUSNESS, COMA and ultimately DEATH will occur.
Do you have any of these fuel burning appliances?
- Gas Furnace.
- Gas Water Heater.
- Wood Burning Stove.
- Gas Ranges or Ovens.
- Gas Dryers.
- Kerosene Heaters.
- Charcoal/Gas Grilles.
- Lawn Mowers.
- Snow Blowers.
- Chain Saws.
Dangerous levels of carbon monoxide can occur if these appliances are improperly installed/maintained, damaged, malfunctioning or improperly used/ventilated. Furnaces, water heaters, wood stoves and chimneys should be checked yearly by a professional service. This is to ensure proper function and ventilation. Yard equipment (ie., lawn mowers, snow blowers, etc.) or charcoal/gas grilles should never be used or run in the home.
What to do if your CO detector goes off.
- Ventilate the house and get out!
- As you leave, turn off fuel burning appliances if possible.
- Get fresh air.
- Call 911.
- Seek medical attention if you have signs & symptoms of CO poisoning.
- Don't go back into the building until cleared by the fire department.