Escape Plan

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Did you know that 7 out of 10 fires in Canada occur at home? Protect your family and home from fire with smoke alarms and by planning your escape.

Plan To Escape

Thumbnail of excape plan gridDraw a floor plan of your home showing all possible exits from each room. Plan a main escape route and an alternate escape route from each room, especially bedrooms. When fire strikes, a planned step-by-step escape route can reduce panic and confusion. Most of all, it can save lives. Download a grid to make your plan today!

Choose A Meeting Place

Arrange an outside meeting place and a safe location to call 9-1-1. The best place to meet is in front of your home, where firefighters will arrive.

Practice Your Plan

Conduct a fire drill at least once every six months. The best place to start your fire drill is from a bedroom. Sound the alarm and get everyone in the home to participate. In a real fire, you must be prepared to move quickly and carefully without confusion. Don't rush through the drill. Make sure everyone knows exactly what to do. After the drill, discuss what took place and how to improve performance. Make your fire drill as realistic as possible. Practice two escape routes. Vary your drills. For example, one drill might place a fire in an attic while another might place it in a kitchen. Make sure everyone understands how escape routes are altered depending on different fire locations. Pretend that there are no lights, and that your escape routes are filling with smoke.

Be Prepared

Make sure everyone in the household can unlock all doors and windows quickly, even in the dark. Windows or doors with security bars need to be equipped with quick-release devices and everyone in the household should know how to use them.
If you live in an apartment building
, use stairways to escape. Never use an elevator during a fire. It may stop between floors or take you to a floor where the fire is burning.
If you live in a two storey house
, and you must escape from a second storey window, be sure there is a safe way to reach the ground. Make special arrangements for children, older adults and people with disabilities. People who have difficulty moving should have a phone in their sleeping area and, if possible, should sleep on the ground floor.
Test doors before opening them
. While kneeling or crouching at the door, reach up as high as you can and touch the door, the knob and the space between the door and its frame with the back of your hand. If the door is hot, use another escape route. If the door is cool, open it with caution.
If you are trapped, close all doors between you and the fire. Stuff the cracks around the doors with towels or blankets to keep out smoke. Wait at a window and signal for help with a light coloured cloth or a flashlight. If there is a phone in the room, call 911 and tell the operator exactly where you are.

Get Out Fast

Make sure your family knows to leave immediately when they hear a smoke alarm or someone yelling, "Fire!" Don't try to take possessions or pets.

Don't Go Back, No Matter What!

After you are out, call 9-1-1.Once outside and at the designated meeting place, no one re-enters the burning house. Firefighters are equipped and trained to handle rescue operations and they will let you know when it is safe to go back into the house. Get out and stay out!

Source of this article: Toronto Fire Department

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