Update: The contest is over, but these materials are still useful!
We shouldn’t forget about fire drills and fire safety just because everybody’s been home for much of the last few months — in fact, in some ways, staying sharp on fire safety is more important than ever.
The Beacon Falls Fire Marshal’s Office is sponsoring its first Home Fire Safety Challenge this year! We at Beacon Hose are thrilled to be a part of this challenge, which is designed to bring fire drills to you and make your home a safer place.
The Home Fire Safety Challenge requires Beacon Falls families to complete a fire safety checklist, create a fire escape plan, practice your plan, and submit it back to us. After Fire Prevention Day, the Fire Marshal’s Office will select three lucky winners — and those winning families will win an experience in which Beacon Hose and the Fire Marshal’s Office will come and practice the plan with you!
Here’s what you need to do:
- Read all the information on this page — including important fire safety tips (at the bottom). You can also click here for a great sheet of fire safety cartoons that can help explain all of this to young children.
- Click here to download the fire escape planning sheet. Either print out the sheets or use a smartphone/tablet and review all the information as a family.
- Complete the checklist on the planning sheet as a family. This will require some work — whether it’s testing or installing smoke alarms, clearing clutter from fire escapes, or fixing broken things around the home.
- Draw a map of your home (all levels and rooms) and make sure everything is labeled — room names, doors, windows, smoke alarms, the outside meeting place, and anything else important. Then, draw arrows to show the directions each person should follow in case of an emergency.
- Make sure everyone knows the plan by heart and practice it! You can even try it with blindfolds (with supervision and safety precautions) to simulate a late-night or smoked-out condition.
- When all of this is finished, send your completed checklist and escape map to us! If you printed it, you can drop it off at Beacon Hose. If you completed it digitally, you may send it to us via Facebook or email (firstname.lastname@example.org). Please include your name, your phone number, your email address, and your address.
We will accept submissions until Saturday, Oct. 10, at 11:59 p.m. We will then randomly select our winners and contact them within the following week to schedule a practice time. For your own privacy, do not post your fire escape plan on social media or any public forum.
Here are some more important fire safety tips:
- A closed door may slow the spread of smoke, heat, and fire. It’s a good idea to sleep with your door closed, and when you leave your home in case of a fire, close all doors behind you.
- Install smoke alarms inside every sleeping room and outside each separate sleeping area. Install alarms on every level of the home.
- Smoke alarms should be interconnected if possible. When one smoke alarm sounds, they all sound.
- Change your smoke alarm batteries when you change your clocks every year. Replace the entire smoke alarm at least every 10 years.
Check out this video for great visual examples of how to plan and practice a fire escape plan.
Please let us know if you have any questions! We are excited to help our community practice important fire safety planning!