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How to Prepare Your Home for a Fire

In Australia alone there are over 10,000 house fires each year. In a mere 30 seconds a small flame can transpire into an uncontrollable blaze. Common causes of these disastrous infernos are heaters, electric blankets, dryers, damaged electrical appliances, neglected stoves and faulty wiring. Luckily, most fires can be prevented if a few simple precautions are taken.


Preventing the fire

42% of house fires start in the kitchen. A common cause is leaving the stove unattended. When using your stove always ensure there are no tea towels or electrical cords that could possibly come in contact with the flame.

Electrical cables are another common starter of fires. If electrical cables are wired incorrectly or are frayed, they may possibly ignite. In most cables the jacket surrounding the wires is flammable, serving to further spread the fire along the cable, and around your house. Therefore in order to avoid cable-based house fires you must always hire a qualified electrician, avoid overloading power-points with power boards and you should additionally opt for fire rated cables. Fire rated cables have fire retardant PVC outer jackets to prevent spread of fire and do not produce toxic fumes.

Electric blankets are an infamous starter of uncontrollable house-fires. Never leave the blankets on when you leave the house, or even as you sleep. Be careful to inspect your blanket for any signs of wear and tear, and always follow the manufacturers care instructions to avoid damage. Furthermore heaters and dryers have the ability to overheat and catch on to materials. 

Detecting the fire

Smoke around a smoke detectorIn the unfortunate event that a fire does arise from any of the aforementioned sources, a working smoke detector will be required. If your smoke detector doesn't work, you are 60% less likely to survive a house fire. It is recommended that you have a detector stationed in every room in your residence where someone sleeps. It is also important to check the batteries and overall condition of the device regularly.

Stopping the fire

fire safety kit If the fire is small, it is possible that you can stop it yourself. Having a fire blanket stationed in your kitchen is handy to smother incipient fires from your stove, whilst a fire extinguisher is important to eradicate a flame somewhat bigger. This fire safety kit is an easy way to prep your home, and additionally allows you to save cash as it is cheaper than purchasing each of the respective items individually.


Escape route

Emergency fire exit sign on a red background

If the fire becomes too large you will need to evacuate the house. People often overestimate the time they would have to escape in a fire, and hence it is important to always be prepared. Inspect your home for any possible exits and escape routes. Make sure all door and windows can be opened easily. Then choose a designated meeting point outside the house. Finally ensure all members of the family are aware of the plan. All of this information can be summarised with a  floor plan of your house.

Call 000

After you have evacuated your house and are in a place of safety remember to call triple zero