- In “The Most Common Mistakes People Make During a House Fire,“ Baltimore County Fire Department Battalion Chief Jennifer Utz shares her experience with how to avoid the costly – sometimes deadly – mistakes people often make in a house fire.
- Smoke alarms are vital for keeping your family safe during a dangerous situation. When working properly, smoke alarms constantly scan the air for fire and smoke. Having smoke alarms significantly increases your chances of surviving a house fire. However, smoke alarms are only effective if they’re properly installed and maintained.
- Find out more about smoke alarm safety and how you can protect your family.
- Make sure cell phones and other portable devices are fully charged and consider purchasing and charging spare batteries.
- Have a disaster supply kit with bottled water, non-perishable food (with a hand-operated can opener), a first aid kit, portable radio and flashlight with extra batteries, toiletries, special items needed for pets or infants, prescription medicine, a change of clothes and bedding. The kit will be helpful if you have to evacuate quickly or if you are without power.
- Keep some cash available in case ATM machines are not available.
- Have copies of important documents such as home and property insurance policies, driver’s licenses, health insurance cards, etc.
- Know where you would meet other members of your family if your home is not safe.
- Remember that in the immediate aftermath of a serious event, wireless communications systems may be overloaded. Text family members to let them know you are safe so voice calls for emergency agencies can go through.
Community members are the key to our Nation’s preparedness and resilience. FEMA supports the development of prepared, vigilant, and engaged communities with online training courses. IS-909: Implementing Community Preparedness is one of these courses. By the end of this course, participants will be able to identify the steps for planning and conducting a community-based preparedness program and identify resources for supporting community-based preparedness programs.