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Fire Prevention 2014 – Check Smoke Alarms

Check your smoke alarmNational Fire Prevention Week 2014 is October 5 thru 11, and this year’s focus is on smoke alarms. Since 1922, this annual focus on fire safety sponsored by the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) has served to educate the public on ways to prevent fires and survive fires. Other recent themes were “Have 2 ways out!” and “Kitchen Safety.” No matter the theme, related educational materials for children are always a huge part of National Fire Prevention Week.

Fire Safety Tips

“Working Smoke Alarms Save Lives” is this year’s fire safety slogan. On the NFPA website, a quiz on smoke alarms is included and (spoiler alert!) shares some of the following facts:

  • The most common reason smoke alarms fail is because the batteries are disconnected, missing, or dead.
  • Three in five fire fatalities occur in homes in which there were no working smoke alarms.
  • Smoke alarms should be tested monthly.
  • Smoke alarms should be installed in each bedroom, outside each sleeping area, and on each level of a home.
  • Due to the modern furnishings and construction used today, you may have as little as 3 minutes to escape a home fire.

Here are more safety tips, based on past themes of National Fire Prevention Week:

  • Every family should devise a plan for what to do in case of a fire.
  • Every room should have two ways out.
  • Two-thirds of home cooking fires are started when food or other cooking materials ignite.
  • Unattended cooking accounts for 34% of all reported home cooking fires, ranges are a factor in 58% of home cooking fires, and ovens are factors in 16% of them.
  • Children under age 5 are at a greater risk of non-fire burns involving cooking, as opposed to being burned by a cooking fire.

Home Heating Fires

With chimneys being our business, we are especially interested in facts about preventing home heating fires. The following information is included with this year’s data for National Fire Prevention Week:

  • Failure to clean chimneys is the leading factor which contributes to heating equipment fires, primarily because of highly flammable creosote buildup.
  • Fixed or portable space heaters, including wood stoves, are involved in 33%, approximately 1/3, of home heating fires and 81%, four out of five, home heating fatalities.
  • Of all home heating fire fatalities, half of them are the result of fires caused by heating equipment being too near combustible materials such as clothing, upholstered furniture, mattresses, or bedding.
  • In any given year, heating equipment is usually the second leading cause of home fires, fire injuries, and fire fatalities.
  • Four out of five heating fire deaths involve fixed or portable space heaters.
Sparky the Fire Dog

While National Fire Prevention Week has been around since 1922, Sparky the Fire Dog® was created in 1951 and has been the NFPA official mascot ever since. Sparky is a widely recognized spokesdog and fire safety icon who routinely visits schools and spreads fire safety messages. He also participates in community events, with a featured role in Fire Prevention Week campaigns every year. Sparky has an active website with materials and videos designed just for kids, with the goal of teaching them about fire safety.

Here’s a fun & informative video that teaches kids about the importance of following fire safety and listening for a smoke alarm signal:

Contact us today for your annual chimney inspection and cleaning, to help keep your home safe from fires.

Northeastern Chimney, Inc
37 Cody Street, West Hartford, CT 06110
Phone: 860-233-5770

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