In a fire, seconds count

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As firefighters, all too often we witness tragedies as the result of fire and accidents. We are saddened by these tragedies, but they serve to build our resolve to educate our residents on how to prevent such tragedies from happening. Some of the very simplest tasks, such as having a working smoke alarm and having a plan can have a dramatic effect on the outcome of a house fire.

In a fire, seconds count. Seconds can mean the difference between residents of our community escaping safely from a fire or having their lives end in tragedy.

That is why this year’s Fire Prevention Week theme: “Every Second Counts: Plan 2 Ways Out” is so important. It reinforces why everyone needs to have an escape plan.

Start with these ideas:

• With all members of your household, draw a map of your home marking two exits from each room and a path to the outside from each exit.

• Practice your home fire drill twice a year. Conduct one at night and one during the day with everyone in your home, and practice using different ways out.

• Teach children how to escape on their own in case you can’t help them.

• Close doors behind you as you leave – this may slow the spread of smoke, heat and fire.

• Once you get outside, stay outside. Never go back inside a burning building.

As we wrap up Fire Prevention Week, I hope you took a few moments to talk to your families about fire safety and if you haven’t yet, please do it now. Remember, “Every Second Counts: Plan 2 Ways Out”

Kevin Weinberger

Airdrie Fire Chief

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