Smoke Alarms Are A Must
The majority of deaths in a house fire happen due to a lack of smoke alarms or whose batteries are dead. Not only should you make sure to have smoke alarms around the house, but you should keep them in working order. Even if you live in an apartment, you should ensure that smoke alarms are around and functional. It is recommended that you test your smoke alarm once a month.
Despite what you may think, smoke kills more often than the heat of the flames. Many homes are full of materials that will release toxic fumes when burned that are terribly harmful to your lungs. That aside, the carbon monoxide from the smoke itself will prevent you from breathing in enough oxygen and will cause you to suffocate. However, lucky for you, smoke tends to rise which means that as long as your able to keep your head low you will have a better chance of breathing good air.
Don't Open More Doors Than Necessary
While in a fire, your priority should be getting yourself and others out of the building as quickly and safely as possible. That being said, you should never open more doors or windows than are necessary. Every open window and door is another way for more oxygen to get in and feed the flames. So it’s best to close doors behind you as you escape in order to slow down the fire as much as possible.
Additionally, the fire may be on the other side of the door. In order to find out whether there may be fire on the other side, you will need to carefully check the handle. If the handle is hot, you know there is danger waiting for you. In this case, opening up the door might cause a flare-up and so you need to find another way out.
Take Stairs Over Elevators
It's a terrible idea to take an elevator during a fire. Even if they look perfectly fine, elevator shafts can easily fill up with smoke and many of their parts aren't fire proof. Not to mention that if the elevator gets stuck, then your unlikely to get out and will end up stuck with all the smoke.
Stop, Drop, And Roll
As you probably remember, you need to stop, drop and roll if you find yourself on fire. By no circumstances should you run! Running only makes the fire burn quicker and you’ll be less likely to survive. As silly as the advice might sound, the stop, drop and roll is the best way to ensure your safety.
Be Wary Of Fire Hazards
As you can imagine, the best way to stay safe from a fire is to prevent it from happening in the first place. Often, fire doesn't just start up spontaneously or out of the blue. Typically, fires are due to negligent behavior or a defective product. For example, you may have kept a gas stove left on and unattended or failed to put out their cigarette properly. The holiday season can be especially problematic with all the electronic decorations and lights that may be kept on constantly even when unattended.