We have come a long way in preventing house fires and their associated injuries and deaths over the last 40 years. For example, in 1977, 723,500 house fires resulted in nearly 5,900 civilian deaths and $10.2 billion in damage. In 2013, there were just 369,500 house fires, 2,700 civilian deaths and $6.8 billion in property damage. Within our individual communities and neighborhoods, we need to do everything we can to bring those numbers down even further.
There is no way to eliminate house fires completely. However, there are steps we can all take to make our homes safer and to reduce the risk of injuries and deaths should a house fire occur.
Spring is a great time to start thinking about fire safety. You are already in spring cleaning mode, so why not take the spring months to do some simple things that can reduce your fire risk. Below are some easy-to-implement tips along with a brief explanation of how wireless home security can help.
Check Your Smoke Alarms
Fire departments around the country take advantage of the start of daylight saving time to encourage people to check the batteries in their smoke alarms. Your smoke alarm should have a test button that you simply press to make sure the battery is working. If not, replace the battery with a fresh one.
If your smoke alarms are hardwired to your home’s electrical system, they still need to be checked. They can fail from time to time. Also, be aware that sometimes hardwired smoke alarms are temporarily disconnected for whatever reason. Make sure yours are not.
Check Electrical Outlets and Cords
Electrical outlets and cords take a beating during the winter months because we are inside for longer hours, resulting in more frequent use of electrical appliances. While you clean, give each of your outlets (and the cords plugged into them) a quick inspection to make sure everything is okay. Do the same for exterior electrical outlets as well. They can sometimes suffer damage from winter weather.
Replace Extension Cords
If you have been utilizing extension cords in your home for long-term purposes, spring is the time to change that. Extension cords are meant to be temporary only. So, if you have one that has been plugged in for months, it is better to run wiring to install a new outlet so the extension cord can be eliminated.
Remove Unnecessary Flammables
Your spring cleaning will undoubtedly involve the garage – if you have one. A good thing to pay attention to in the garage is the existence of flammables including gasoline and charcoal lighter fluid. If there are any flammables you no longer need, check with your county or city to make arrangements to properly dispose of them. Those you do intend to keep should be sealed in approved containers and kept in a cool place.
How Wireless Home Security Can Help
If you are not already utilizing home security, spring is a great time to look into it. The most basic of systems usually includes both burglary and fire monitoring at a very reasonable price. The advantage of fire monitoring is that it keeps track of your home even when you are not there. Monitoring also allows for quicker response times because monitoring centers can immediately notify local first responders.
Reducing the risks associated with house fires is no accident. It takes a concerted effort among homeowners to keep themselves and their families as safe as possible. We hope you will utilize these tips in combination with installing a wireless home security system with fire monitoring.