Key Points

From candles to cooking to electrical wiring to home appliances, there are potential fire hazards at every turn within our homes. In recent years, unintentional fires have killed an average of 2,500 people, injured more than 13,000, and caused $5 billion in property damage. Learn how to protect your family and home from fire hazards.

Get an Early Warning

Have a working smoke alarm placed on each level in the home outside bedroom areas and inside every bedroom. Never disconnect batteries from smoke alarms, and move them away from kitchens or bathrooms. Replace the batteries once a year, for example during daylight savings time, or when they “chirp.” Replace smoke alarms every 10 years.

Plan Your Escape

Help those who need help. Children and the elderly may not hear smoke alarms. Consider this as part of your escape plan. Plan your escape route and practice leaving your home. Decide on one place outside where family members should meet.

Steps You Can Take to Prevent Fires

Have your heating system, water heater and any other fuel-burning appliances serviced by a qualified technician every year. Keep portable heaters, smoking materials and candles away from bedding, curtains or other combustibles. Keep lighters and matches out of the reach of children. Keep a close eye on what you’re cooking. Cooking equipment accounts for the highest percentage of fires.


U.S. Fire Administration

This brochure provides tips to help prevent the #1 cause of fires.

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