As the summer comes to an end, parents are getting ready to send their children back to school. With that comes back-to-school activities such as shopping for school supplies, packing backpacks, and meeting and greeting new teachers. And while fire drills are taught to students while at school, it is not the same as fire safety guidelines for the home.
Fire safety while at home shouldn’t be overlooked and each family should have a plan in place in case of a fire. Many older children will return home at the end of each school day to an empty house until their parents get home from work. It is important to teach the children how to keep themselves, and their siblings, safe should a fire arise.
Introducing or reviewing fire safety guidelines with your children is just as important as learning their class schedules and locker combinations. Did you know 25% of k-12 youth care for themselves in the afternoon? Of that group, 11% are in grades 1st through 5th and 34% are in grades 6th through 8th. If your child or children are mature enough to stay home alone, they need to have the knowledge on how to prevent fires or survive a fire, if one should occur.
Below we have provided a checklist regarding what rules you should put into place for your children if they stay home from school.
- Playing with matches, lighters, candles are not allowed
- If they can cook for themselves, be sure to instill safe habits including turning off any appliance used
- Don’t put anything over a lampshade (often a great pillar when making blanket forts!)
- Have a working fire extinguisher in the house.
- If a fire does occur, get out of the house first and then call 9-1-1.
- As a family, have a set-in-place escape plan in case of fire emergencies. Practice 3 times a year or every 4 months. This plan can also adjust with seasons if snow prevents you from getting to a designated meeting spot.
- Teach your kids how to call 9-1-1 in case of emergency. Role-play with the child what to say and be sure they know their address. Be sure to explain it is not a game.
Fire Protection Industry and MIJA
Being in the life safety industry has allowed MIJA to become very familiar with fire safety and prevention. We see it as our duty to provide accurate gauges and efficient suppression systems that are used in a fire emergency.
As a company with many working fathers and mothers, we wanted to post a blog on the importance of teaching children how to stay safe when back from school. From all of us here at MIJA, we wish the best of luck to your students on a safe and productive academic year!