Government urging Albertans to plan two ways out for Fire Prevention Week and beyond

Above: Fire Chief Ken Block, Fire Prevention Officer Martin Landry and Municipal Affairs Minister Shaye Anderson watch an Edmonton family draw up their home fire escape plan. – GOA Photo

by Morinville News Staff

Fire Prevention Week 2017 runs from Oct. 8 to 14, which marks the anniversary of the Great Chicago Fire in 1871. This year’s theme is “Every second counts: Plan two ways out”

As such, Fire Prevention Week 2017 is reminding Albertans to practice a home escape plan with a second way out of rooms and their home.

Although a door is the obvious evacuation route from a room, home or apartment, this year’s Fire Prevention Week theme, “Every second counts: Plan two ways out” urges Albertans to think carefully about having another way out.

They offer the following advice in practicing your fire escape plan: Draw a map of your home, including all doors and windows, find two ways out of every room, make sure doors and windows are not blocked, and choose an outside meeting place. Additionally, they recommend pushing the test button to sound the smoke alarm monthly, practise your fire drill with everyone in the home, and get outside to your meeting place.

“Families that have a home fire escape plan and practise it are much more likely to get out of their homes safely,: said Shaye Anderson, Minister of Municipal Affairs in a government news release. “I’ve made it a priority in my home to have a plan in place to protect my family, and I think it’s important for all Albertans to do the same. Knowing what to do and where to go, especially if your doors are blocked, can save lives.”

Kevan Jess, Acting Alberta Fire Commissioner said a fire escape plan needs to be practical and easy for families to follow.

:This also means having a complete plan for safely using an alternate escape such as a window,: he said. “If you have questions about using a second escape route when making your plan, contact your local fire department for advice.”

During Fire Prevention Week, kindergarten to Grade 6 students from across Alberta complete the “Fire Safety Starts With You” activity book, which teaches early elementary students important life-saving steps they can take to protect themselves, their families and their homes from fire. The Government of Alberta’s Office of the Fire Commissioner and ATCO distributed more than 270,000 activity books across the province this year.

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