Here are some tips to help keep you safe!
Smoke alarms are required on every storey of the home - it's the law! They should also be replaced every 10 years, even the electric hardwired ones. There are new units in stores now that combine smoke and carbon monoxide alarms as well that are worth considering. Test them every month. If you are not able to stand on a ladder or chair, gently push the button with a cane or broom handle. If your smoke alarms are battery operated, change the batteries when you change your clocks. If you have difficulty climbing a ladder or a chair, please have a friend or family member install the smoke alarm for you as directed by the manufacturer’s instructions. If you have no one to assist you, please contact us.
Cooking is the #1 cause of residential fires in the Province of Ontario and is responsible for 12% of the fire deaths for seniors. Of all fatalities of seniors 65 and older, 26% of them had a disability of some type. Follow these fire safety tips so you don't become a statistic.
1. When cooking, wear tight sleeves or short sleeves. When cooking with large flowing sleeves, the material may come in contact with the cooking element and ignite.
2. Keep a pot lid handy when cooking. If a pot or pan catches fire, carefully slide the lid over the top of the pot and turn off the heat. Leave the pot where it is until it has cooled. Don't ever try to carry a burning pot or pan outside or to the sink. Never put water on a grease fire! Pouring baking soda or salt on a grease fire may spatter burning oil on you or other combustible materials.
3. Pay attention when cooking. If you have something on the stove stay in the kitchen until it is finished. If you have to leave the room, turn the stove off or bring an item such as a potholder or oven mitt with you to remind you that you have something on the stove.
4. If your clothing catches fire, STOP DROP and ROLL! Do not run, drop to the floor, cover you face with your hands and roll back and forth until the flames go out. If you have a medical condition or disability that prevents you from dropping to the ground, keep a towel or oven mitt handy and use it to smother the fire.
Fire escape planning is essential for seniors and for anyone with a disability which may impair their ability to hear an alarm or escape from your home during a fire. Plan ahead and practice your escape so you can address any possible issues before they arise. Can't crawl on your hands and knees? Not sure if your window opens? All these should be considered before a fire happens.
See the High Rise Escape Planning for Those with Disabilities information guide, found here.