According to the National Fire Protection Association, there were 339,500 residential structure fires in the US in 2019. As a result, they saw 12,200 civilian injuries and 2,770 civilian deaths.
What if a simple act – one that takes under 10 seconds to complete – could have a potentially life-saving impact during a fire? Would you do it?
In the event of a fire, UL’s Fire Safety Research Institute (FSRI) found that rooms with closed doors had average temperatures of less than 100 degrees and 100 ppm of carbon monoxide, compared to 1000+ degrees and over 10,000ppm of carbon monoxide in the rooms with open doors.
Each day, Campbell County Department of Public Safety responds to a variety of calls, some more easily controlled than others. This is why we asking our community to encourage a simple behavioral change – “Close Before You Doze.”
In partnership with FSRI, we want every family to make sure they close all of their doors – bedrooms, bathrooms and basement – at night in order to starve any potential fire of the oxygen it requires to grow. It will give you much more time to escape.
To increase your chances of survival during a fast-moving house fire, we suggest the following:
• Make sure your smoke and CO alarms are in working condition. Install smoke alarms in every sleeping room and outside each separate sleeping area. Install alarms on every level of the home. Smoke alarms should be interconnected. When one sounds, they all sound. Test them monthly.
• Close your doors at night.
• If a fire ignites and you can get out of the burning structure, do so quickly and close every door behind you as you exit. If you can’t, put a closed door between you and the fire to buy yourself valuable time. Don’t ever go back inside a burning home.
• For parents worried about hearing their child through a door closed, simply place a baby monitor in the child's room. If you can’t get to their room because you’re cut off by smoke, know that the closed door will provide a safety barrier – giving them more time for help to arrive.
• Have an escape plan. Identify multiple escape routes from every room and practice them as a family at various hours. After a fire starts, there's very little time to act.
Take these fire safety and prevention steps today and you'll sleep easier at night.