The American Red Cross is reminding everyone that fire prevention demands some action on the part of homeowners and renters.
Americans should take two simple steps - practice fire drills at home and test smoke alarms monthly - to stay safe from the nation's most frequent and deadliest disaster.
On average, seven people die every day from home fires, which take more lives each year than all other natural disasters combined in the U.S., according to the National Fire Protection Association.
But working smoke alarms cut the risk of dying in a home fire in half.
Every day, seven people die in home fires, most in homes that lack working smoke alarms. The American Red Cross wants to help make sure homes across the country have working smoke alarms to protect you and your family from needless death and injury.
What You Should Do
Experts say that today's home fires burn faster than ever, leaving people with only as little as two minutes to escape a burning residence. But many mistakenly believe they have more time, according to a Red Cross survey last year. During Fire Prevention Week, the Red Cross urges everyone to take these lifesaving steps:
- Develop a fire escape plan with everyone in your household and practice it at least twice a year. Need help with your plan? Use these free Home Fire Campaign resources.
- Install smoke alarms in your home, on every level and outside each sleeping area. Test them once a month and replace the batteries at least once a year if required.
- Teach children what smoke alarms sound like and what they should do if they hear one.
- Make sure all household members know two ways to escape from every room.
- Establish a family meeting spot outside.
Find out more at www.redcross.org.