Safety in the Home (Part 2)
Posted by Debbie Pilson in category Well-aging on May 21, 2012
Smoke alarms save lives. Have someone test them once a month by pushing the test button. If you have no one to test them, call your local fire department. If you do NOT have a smoke alarm, many fire departments provide them free of charge. If they do not, call NCBAM at 1-877-506-2226. Change smoke alarm batteries at least once a year. If your smoke alarm is more than 10 years old, it's time to get a new one.
If you are hard of hearing, get a smoke detector with a visual alarm (strobe or flashing light). Some vibrate the pillow.
Install smoke alarms on ALL levels of your home and outside EACH sleeping area.
Plan and practice your escape from fire and smoke. Learn all the ways to get out of your house in a hurry. Make sure windows and doors open easily. Give space heaters space. Keep them 2-3 feet away from anything that can burn.
Wear more fitted clothing when cooking. Housecoat sleeves that hang down can be a fire hazard if using a back burner on a stove when the front burner is on.
Don't cook if you're drowsy from medication. Never leave cooking unattended. Use a timer to remind you to check cooking.
If a pan catches on fire, slide the lid on the pan from the side and turn off the burner, or use a fire extinguisher.
If there is an oven fire, cut the stove off, and leave the oven closed. Call the fire department.
If you burn yourself, immerse the burn in cool water for 3-5 minutes. Get medical assistance immediately. Never put butter or any other grease on a burn.
If your clothing catches on fire, stop, drop gently to the floor, cover your face with your hands, and roll over and over or back & forth to put out the fire. Covering your face protects your airway which helps prevent smoke inhalation. Some people breathe in suddenly when startled; this can cause internal inhalation burns. If you can't "stop, drop and roll," smother the flames with a towel or blanket.
Know to call 911 for fire and medical emergencies. You may want to write "911" on the telephone in large numbers. When an emergency occurs, sometimes we panic and cannot think clearly. Have emergency numbers written in an easily accessible and visible place.
Have a telephone in your bedroom.
Have your bedroom on the first floor of your home. If a fire occurs, you will not have to come down the steps or go out a second floor window. A bedroom on the first floor is a much safer option.
Never smoke in bed. Never smoke when using oxygen.
Wet cigarette butts before throwing them out. Use deep, sturdy ashtrays.