Fire Safety Tips for At-Risk Groups
Certain groups of people are more at-risk of being affected by a fire than others. The most vulnerable groups of people include adults 65 or older, children under the age of five, people with disabilities, residents of rural communities, or those who life in urban areas that may experience intentional or arson fires. If you are included in any of the above groups, it is important to acknowledge the increased risk and plan accordingly.
Develop a fire-escape plan and make sure that your home or apartment has a functional smoke detector system to alert you at the first sign of a fire. Evaluate every room in your house and identify two different exit paths. A little bit of preparation can go a long way in keeping at-risk groups safe.
Older Adults & Those with Disabilities
Adults 65 and older may not be able to quickly escape in the case of an emergency due to reduced mobility. If it is possible, older adults with mobility issues should sleep on the ground floor to make escaping easier. If older adults are in your family, make sure that someone is a designated helper in the case of an emergency.
Those with disabilities may not be able to move quickly in the case of an emergency, so another adult should be dedicated to helping them if the time comes. Vibration pads are useful for those who have hearing impairments as well. Make sure to check that windows are easy to open and keep a phone in the room in case someone were to get trapped.
If you have a child who is five years old or younger, you’ll want to educate them about fire safety as soon as possible. This will help reduce the risk that they play with potentially dangerous items such as lighters, matches or outlets.
It is also common for children to sleep through a smoke alarm, so make sure an adult in the family is responsible for waking up any younger children. Work with your child to show them at least two exits out of their room and emphasize the importance of staying low while escaping to avoid rising smoke. Also, make sure that they are aware of the chosen meeting place outside and teach them the address of your home to recall in the case of an emergency.
Helping prepare for at-risk groups to escape in the case of an emergency can make all of the difference to their safety. Also ensure that your house is fully equipped with necessary equipment, including a home smoke detector system, fire escape ladders, carbon monoxide alarms, and more!