Lakewood and University Place, Wash. – Over the past two weeks, West Pierce Fire & Rescue has responded to seven significant structure fires including; two commercial fires, two apartment fires, one duplex fire and two house fires, along with several smaller fires. The causes of these fires have varied, but a few fire safety tips will help you from suffering the devastating effects of a fire in your home or business.
Be kitchen wise.
- Wear tight-fitting clothing or short sleeves when cooking.
- Use oven mitts to handle hot pans.
- Never leave cooking unattended.
- If a pan of food catches fire, slide a lid over it and turn off the burner.
- Don’t cook if you are drowsy from alcohol or medication.
- Propane and charcoal BBQ grills should only be used outdoors.
- The grill should be placed well away from the home, deck railings and out from under eaves and overhanging branches.
- Keep children and pets at least three feet away from the grill area.
- Never leave your grill unattended.
- If you have a charcoal grill only use charcoal starter fluid. Never add charcoal fluid or any other flammable liquids to the fire.
- When you are finished grilling, let the coals completely cool before disposing in a metal container.
If you smoke, smoke outside.
- Use deep, sturdy ashtrays.
- Wet cigarette butts and ashes before throwing them out or bury them in sand.
- Never smoke in bed.
Give space heaters space.
- Keep them at least three feet (1 meter) away from anything that can burn – including you.
- Shut off and unplug heaters when you leave your home or go to bed.
Smoke alarms save lives.
- Have smoke alarms installed outside each sleeping area, on every level of your home, and in each bedroom.
- Have someone test your smoke alarms once a month by pushing the test button.
- West Pierce Fire & Rescue has a free smoke alarm program. Please contact us during business hours at 253-564-1623 to see if you qualify.
Plan and practice your escape from fire.
- If possible, know two ways out of every room in your home and two ways out of the home.
- Make sure windows and doors open easily. In a fire, get out and stay out.
Know your local emergency number.
- In our area, the number is 9-1-1.
- Once you have escaped a fire, call the fire department from a neighbor’s phone or a cell phone.
If you have any questions regarding fire safety in your home or business please contact us at 253-564-1623.