TAVARES — As part of the Annual Fire Prevention Week (Oct. 9-15), the Lake County Department of Public Safety, Fire Rescue Division, is stepping up its public-education efforts to remind residents how to keep homes fire-safe with life-saving technology and proper planning.
During this year's fire safety campaign, firefighters and safety advocates from the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) are spreading the word on how simple actions taken to protect against fires can save lives with the theme, “It’s Fire Prevention Week. Protect Your Family From Fire!”
According to officials from the NFPA, 2,565 people in the U.S. died in home fires in 2009. The leading causes of home fires include cooking, heating and electrical equipment, as well as candles and smoking materials.
“Nearly all fire-related deaths in the home can be prevented by taking a few simple precautions, like having working smoke alarms and a home fire escape plan,” said John Jolliff, Lake County Fire Chief and Public Safety Director. ”Fire is a dangerous opponent, but by anticipating the hazards, you can keep your family safe.”
Lake County Fire Rescue offers the following tips for protecting your home and family from fire:
- Stay in the kitchen while you are frying, grilling, or broiling food. If you leave the kitchen for even a short period of time, turn off the stove.
- Keep anything that can burn at least three feet away from heating equipment, like the furnace, fireplace, wood stove, or portable space heater.
- Have a three-foot “kid-free zone” around open fires and space heaters.
- Replace or repair damaged or loose electrical cords.
- If you smoke, smoke outside.
- Use deep, wide ashtrays on a sturdy table.
- Blow out all candles when you leave the room or go to bed. Avoid the use of candles in the bedroom and other areas where people may fall asleep.
For more information about fire prevention, call the Lake County Department of Public Safety, Fire Rescue Division, at (352) 343-9458 or visit www.lakecountyfl.gov, keyword: fire. To learn more about “It’s Fire Prevention Week. Protect your Family from Fire!” visit NFPA’s website at www.firepreventionweek.org.