National Fire Prevention Month gives you a chance to prepare your home

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YORK, Pa.-- October is National Fire Prevention Month, which is fitting as it is right around the time that many turn on the heat in their homes. That could potentially be a fire hazard if your home is not prepared for a fire.

In fact, according to the National Fire Protection Association, household fires are so common that a fire department responds to one every 24 seconds.

Today on FOX43 Morning News, Patrick Doxen, an associate from Home Depot, is here to provide you with tips on keeping your home safe.

There are a number of steps to take to ensure the safety of your home.

These steps have been provided from our friends at the Home Depot:

STEP ONE: Test & Upgrade Alarms

  • According to The National Fire Protection Association, two thirds of residential fire fatalities result from fires in homes without working smoke alarms.
  • Take 10 minutes to ensure smoke and carbon monoxide alarms are functioning at least twice a year. If batteries need to be replaced, use the long-lasting Duracell Quantum batteries. These advanced alkaline batteries have an exclusive PowerCheck feature that allows you to verify the power level at any time.
  • Install wall-mounted alarms no more than 12 inches away from the ceiling to provide the earliest warning possible, and always follow the manufacturer’s installation instructions.
  • ROOM BY ROOM: Some alarms are built with custom functionality for the different rooms in your home:
    • Kitchen: Nest Protect Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Detector distinguishes between cooking and fire smoke to detect real fires faster and reduce false alarms from cooking. It also connects to your smartphone to offer peace of mind even if you’re away.
      • SMART FIRE EQUIPMENT: Other benefits of Nest include:
  • Early Detection: Detects the location and cause of the problem
  • LED Lighting: Lights your path when you walk underneath it at night
  • Mobile Alerts:

o   Immediately communicates information with push notifications to your smart phone so you will know about alarms even when you’re away from home

o   Device can be easily silenced from your smart phone

    • Bedrooms: The Kidde Twin Pack Worry Free 10 Year Combination Alarm with Voice is perfect for bedrooms – voice alarms are more effective in waking up heavy sleepers, especially children who may sleep through the siren but will wake up to a voice.
      • SMART FIRE EQUIPMENT: This alarm will signal "fire" when a smoke or fire hazard is detected and "warning carbon monoxide" when a CO hazard is identified.
    • Hallways: Kidde 10 Year Smoke Alarm with LED Escape Light helps your family exit quickly with bright LEDs that provide a lighted escape when the alarm sounds.
      • SMART FIRE EQUIPMENT: Never replace a battery during the alarm's operating life, in addition to the benefit of maintenance free, batteries are sealed, no need to worry about them being removed.

STEP TWO: Get Educated On Extinguishers

  • Fire extinguishers effectively put out 80 percent of all fires according to a study, so make sure you have at least one on every level. Here are a few that you can have in specific areas in the home.

o   Kitchen: Kitchen fires are unique because of the oil and grease used in cooking, choose an extinguisher designed for cooking related fires like the Kidde UL 711A Kitchen Fire Extinguisher.

o   Garage: Flammable chemicals are likely stored in the garage, so choose an extinguisher with a higher capacity to combat combustible materials such as the Kidde 5 B:C Fire Extinguisher.

o   Living Area: The Kidde 1-A:10-B:C Fire Extinguisher can be used on most household fires, including trash, wood, paper, liquid, gas and electrical equipment fires.


  • When using a fire extinguisher, use the P.A.S.S. technique as described by the National Fire Protection Association:

o   PULL the pin.

o   AIM low and point the nozzle at the base of the fire.

o   SQUEEZE the handle to release the extinguishing agent.

o   SWEEP from side to side at the base of the fire until it’s out.


STEP THREE: Prepare An Escape Plan

  • According to the Federal Emergency Management Agency, it’s important to make a plan, so everyone in your house knows the best escape routes. Choose an outside meeting place (i.e. neighbor's house, mailbox, or stop sign) a safe distance in front of your home where everyone will know to meet.
  • After making your home fire escape plan, practice it at least twice a year and make the drill as realistic as possible by aiming to get out in 5 minutes or less.
  • If you have a multilevel property, have the Kidde Fire Escape Ladder handy to drop out the window and create an emergency exit. The ladder requires no assembly and the tangle-free design allows you to get out of the house fast and easy.