Fire safety day at Berkeley Mall Sat.
By Staff Reports
Published in News on October 9, 2013 1:46 PM
The American Red Cross will sponsor a Fire Prevention and Safety Day this Saturday from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Berkeley Mall.
Red Cross volunteers will be handing out educational materials and free smoke detectors to the public.
The American Red Cross responds to thousands of fires in peoples' homes every year and most of those fires occur while someone is cooking. The focus of this year's National Fire Prevention Week (Oct. 6-12) is "Prevent Kitchen Fires" and the Red Cross is offering tips for avoiding fires in the kitchen.
"Here in Greene, Lenoir and Wayne counties we see firsthand the destruction a cooking fire can cause," Tammy Forrester, CEO for the local Red Cross, said. "These emergencies can be prevented and we urge everyone to follow these steps to help avoid a fire in their home."
Last year, the Red Cross of eastern North Carolina responded to more than 700 home fires throughout the region.
The Red Cross offers the following safety tips:
KEEP AN EYE ON WHAT YOU FRY: The cook should not wear loose clothing or dangling sleeves while cooking. They should also stay in the kitchen and never leave cooking food unattended. If they must leave the kitchen, for even a short period of time, they should turn off the stove.
More cooking tips:
* Fires can start when the heat is too high. When frying food, if the cook sees smoke or the grease starts to boil, turn the burner off.
* Keep children and pets at least three feet away from the stove.
* Clean and clear the area around the stove before turning on the heat.
* Turn pot handles to the back of the stove so no one bumps them or pulls them over.
* Move things that can burn away from the stove - items such as dishtowels, bags, boxes, paper and curtains.
* Keep a pan lid or a cookie sheet nearby. Use it to cover the pan if it catches on fire. This will put out the fire.
* If the pan catches fire, don't move it. Slide a pan lid or cookie sheet on top of the pan to take the air away and put the fire out. Turn off the heat. Keep the lid on the pan until it cools. Never try to stop a grease or oil fire with water.
* If something catches fire in the oven, keep the door closed. Call 9-1-1 so firefighters can make sure the fire didn't spread to the walls. If a fire occurs in the microwave, keep the door closed and unplug it. Don't use it until a repairman checks it.
STOP, DROP AND ROLL: If a fire occurs and someone's clothes are on fire, they should stop where they are immediately, drop to the floor, cover their face with their hands and roll over and over to suffocate the flames. Keep doing it until the fire is out.
JUST GET OUT: Leave the home and call the fire department from outside. Make sure everyone in the home gets out - fast. Once outside, stay out. Never go back inside a burning building.
MAKE A PLAN: The Red Cross recommends that households develop a fire escape plan and practice it at least twice a year with everyone who lives in the home. People should know two ways to escape from every room and designate a place to meet outside the home in case of a fire.
Other safety steps include:
* Follow the escape plan in case of fire. Get out, stay out, and call 911 or the local emergency number.
* Install smoke alarms on every level of the house and inside bedrooms.
* Replace batteries in smoke alarms at least once a year. Test each alarm monthly by pushing the test button.
* Download the Red Cross First Aid App to get access to life-saving information on what to do for common, everyday first aid emergencies including burns. The app is available in the Apple App Store and on Google Play for Android.
The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies about 40 percent of the nation's blood; teaches skills that save lives; provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families.
The Red Cross is a not-for-profit organization that depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. For information, visit redcross.org or visit us on Twitter at @RedCross.