Are you one of the people whose morning ritual includes filling in on the current news, going page to page on your paper or article to article on your digital media? My honest confession I stopped doing both some time ago. It just got a little depressing to begin my day with such troubling information. But then again without knowledge or awareness as they like to call it, how will we prepare ourselves to handle the age we live in. So, I guess I would need to realign my perspective. And yes, why should that exactly be a concern to you? Ergo without wasting any more of your time, I have some useful tips to share with you in case you find yourself in burning premises.
Before that let me answer where did that come from? During winter especially, the chances of accidental fires owing to heaters, bonfires (cooking amounts to many fires too) increase. On top of that, there are electrical fires as well. Also, the possibility of people getting harmed or dying because of smoke inhalation or carbon monoxide poisoning is more than the actual fire. So now that the quench has been satisfied with why, let’s get on with safety:
1. Exit the building. (I know duh like that’s news). But in order to do so, ensure you know the exit path, the emergency exits, where the stairways are located. At homes ensure your kids are aware of the same as well. And no elevators to be used. Before opening any doors, check (feel) for any heat to establish there is no fire at the other end.
2. When moving out don’t panic, if there is smoke get down on your hands and feet and crawl out. The cooler and cleaner air is near to the ground this will safeguard you from inhaling hazardous smoke.
3. Don’t carry out any baggage or items, remember your life is more important than any material.
4. Gather at the meeting point make certain that you and everyone else is aware of the same.
5. Now, most buildings come equipped with smoke detectors and fire alarms. Having them in the home helps as well. Of course, they would be rendered useless if you don’t wake up to the alarm. So, participate in fire drills and do a practice run at home. (No, it won’t look crazy at all, you could turn it into a fun activity for the family).
6. Know where the fire extinguishers are located and learn to use them as well, that can come in handy.
7. God forbid, but if you/or anyone else catch fire then follow the stop, drop and roll rule. Get down to the ground and roll that helps to put out the fire and reducing injuries from burns.
8. At this point, it’s obviously good if you aren’t wearing any loose clothing or material that is easily flammable. Covering yourself with a blanket or any thick clothing might be a good idea.
9. Finally, call the emergency fire #, (for India it is 101). Please don’t get inspired by movies and act out as a hero. So no entering burning buildings leave that to the evacuation team. You can help people on your way out, and by letting the fire control team know of anyone left inside
Beyond that don’t get in their way, stay out stay safe.
You know what they say, ‘Don’t let your future go up in smoke, Follow fire safety!’