lunes, 11 de mayo de 2015

Tips For Senior Fire Safety

Tips For Senior Fire Safety

According to the United States Fire Administration, seniors (age 65+) are the highest fire risk group the US.  Approximately 1,200 seniors die as a result of fires and 3,000 seniors are injured in residential fires each year.  Why is this?
Seniors in the early stages of retirement, due to their good health and independence, continue routines and activities that eventually can become life threatening (particularly smoking).  Often fire safety needs are overlooked.  Smoking is the primary cause of senior residential fire deaths. This is followed by common place activities like cooking (second) and home heating (third).  The senior living environment also adds to fire risk since many seniors live in older homes that have not been renovated or lack maintenance to accommodate the electrical demands of new appliances or lifestyle changes.
Why are seniors more vulnerable to fire and injury?  Some of the reasons are:
  • Seniors live alone without the help of others in an emergency
  • Seniors are on medication that affects quick decision making
  • Seniors cognitive as well as physical mobility reduces taking fast action
  • Seniors live in older housing with faulty wiring
  • Seniors use of alternative heating such as space heaters and wood stoves
  • Seniors careless smoking (especially around oxygen sources)
  • Seniors leave cooking unattended
  • Seniors have thinner, more delicate skin than younger adults
  • Seniors lack practice and keeping escape routes clear
  • Seniors return to an active fire to collect valuables
  • Seniors lack or improper maintenance of smoke detectors
  • Seniors lack proper first aid
  • Seniors lack of sprinklers in residences
However, there are a number of precautionary steps seniors can take to dramatically reduce their chances of becoming a fire casualty.  This all begins with PREPARATION.
 Senior Safety and Kitchen Cooking Cooking Safety Most home fires start in the kitchen.  These fires generally occur when cooking is left unattended on the stove or in the oven.  If you must leave the kitchen while cooking, turn off the stove or oven.  Otherwise take a spoon or potholder to remind you to return to the kitchen quickly.   Avoid cooking with loose clothing and dangling sleeves that can easily catch fire.  Take extra care when cooking with oils and frying since they can easily ignite.  Have a pan lid available in case of a grease fire and don´t use water to try and kill the flame.  For additional discussion, Read More..
 Senior Safety and Smoke Detectors Smoke Detectors – Where there is smoke, there is fire and the majority of fatal fires occur when people are sleeping,  Because smoke can put you into a deeper sleep rather than waking you, it is important to have a smoke detector to ensure that you wake up.  Installing smoke detectors on each level of the home and sleeping areas will provide advance warning in case of a fire.  The smoke detectors should be checked monthly and the batteries replaced once a year.  If you own a home security system with fire protection, you should have it connected to your smoke detectors so that, in the event of a fire emergency, if you are not able to respond or are not at home, the alarm monitoring center will advise the fire department automatically.
Senior Safety and Alternate Heater Safety Alternate Heater Safety – Heating equipment pose a special fire risk.  They should be installed and maintained correctly.  (When in doubt about how to use, check the product label.)  Keep combustible materials (newspapers, bedding, clothing) a safe distance from a wood heater, hot water heater or space heater.  If it is electric, don´t place it in a bathroom or other wet area.  Since seniors often live in older homes with faulting wiring, older appliances and overloaded electrical sockets can cause fire hazards.
 Senior Safety and Home Escape Plan Home Escape Plan – It is better to be prepared in case of a fire or natural disaster.  The USFA recommends developing and practicing home escape plans and planning them around individual capabilities.  You should have at least two exits from your home and should how to open your windows quickly.  For additional discussion, Read More.If possible, your bedroom should be on the first floor close to the main exit.  For seniors with reduced mobility or under medications, time for escape becomes precious.  It is more important to exit quickly rather than try to save possessions.  Practice your home escape plan.
5enior Safety and Smoking Smoking – According to the American Lung Association, approximately 10% of seniors (65+) currently smoke and thus are prone to an additional fire risk.  When smoking, you should only do while being alert. When drowsy you should extinguish smoking materials and soak the ashes in water before discarding them.  You should not leave smoking materials unattended, deep ashtrays should be used and emptied in a metal container or toilet.  Never smoke in bed.

Take steps now to keep yourself and older loved ones safe and avoid becoming a fire casualty.

For more information, please visit:

No hay comentarios.:

Publicar un comentario