Keeping children safe is the most important of our job here at Kids’ Care Club. That’s why every October, we celebrate Fire Prevention Week to better understand the dangers of fire and how to respond through engaging activities, firefighters presentations, and more.
History of Fire Prevention Week
This year’s Fire Prevention Week is celebrating the 100th anniversary of the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) Fire Prevention Week since it began in 1922. The theme of this year was “Fire won’t wait. Plan your escape.”, raising awareness that residential fires burn faster than they ever have in past decades. Understanding the dangers of fire, having a plan in place, and understanding how to protect yourself and others in your home is more important than ever. This year, NFPA placed a particular emphasis on both smoke alarms and home escape planning. Let’s learn more about how we can all stay safe in our homes from fire.
Smoke alarms are your first line of defense against fires. Make sure that they’re on every level of your home, and work properly. Hearing that alarm should remind all individuals at home that it’s time to get out, stay out, and call 9-1-1.
NFPA recommends knowing the status of your fire alarms at all times. All smoke alarms should have a manufacturing date printed on the back of the device, and NFPA advises that alarms older than 10 years should be replaced with new ones with a sealed, long-life battery. Make sure to change your alarm batteries at least once a year, rather than waiting for the “chirping” that indicates that there’s low power. Testing alarms monthly to ensure that they are working properly is best practice.
Home Escape Planning
Despite how big or small your house is, every home needs an escape plan in case of fire. Make sure to consider any special needs that you or your household members may have, including young children, older adults, and people with disabilities.
NFPA recommends having an escape plan that consists of two ways out of each room in your household (one of them may be a window). Your escape route should be clear of any furniture, clutter, and other obstructions. Additionally, if there are any security fittings on the doors, ensure that they can either be removed or easily unlocked.
Designate a family meeting place a safe distance from the home, such as a tree, mailbox, or light pole, where any firefighters could find you. Once you’ve created the perfect fire escape plan as a family, make it a tradition to practice it once or twice a year!
Fire Prevention Week at KCC
Here at KCC, we learned about fire prevention through lesson plans that helped children understand the dangers of fire, how to be safe around fire, and how to respond. Some of what we learned was that fires make smoke, the importance of stop-drop-and-roll, and what firefighters wear and why. Highlights of the week were different fire-themed art activities every day, a presentation from Mr. Moore, a firefighter in our KCC community, and seeing a real-life firetruck and learning from Rancho Santa Fe firefighters themself at KCC 4S. Thank you, firefighters, we learned so much!