Escape plans help you get out of your home quickly. In less then 30 seconds a small flame can get completely out of control and turn into a major fire. It only takes minutes for a house to fill with thick black smoke and become engulfed in flames.
Practice escaping from every room in the house
The best plans have two ways to get out of each room. If the primary way is blocked by fire or smoke, you will need a second way out. A secondary route might be a window onto an adjacent roof. Make sure widows are not stuck and screens can be taken out quickly.
**Practice feeling your way out of the house in the dark or with your eyes closed.**
Security bars require special precautions
Security bars may help to keep your family safe from intruders, but they can also trap you in a fire! Windows and doors with security bars should have quick release devices to allow them to be opened immediately in an emergency. Make sure everyone in the family understands and practices how to properly operate and open locked or barred doors and windows.
Leave the house
When a fire occurs, do not waste any time saving property. Take the safest exit route and if you have to escape through a smoked filled house remember to crawl low and cover your mouth. The smoke and heat can disorient you or overcome you.
Never open doors that are hot to the touch
When you come to a closed door, use the back of your hand to feel the top of the door, the doorknob, and the crack between the door and door frame. If the door feels hot use your secondary escape plan and do not open the door. Designate a meeting place outside. Meet under a specific tree or at the end of the driveway or front sidewalk to make sure everyone has gotten out safely. Send one person to go to a neighbor to call 911.
Once out, stay out
Remember to escape first, then notify the Fire Department using the 911 system. NEVER GO BACK IN!