Fire Safety is a crucial issue for seniors
The risk of a fire is not the same for seniors as it is for children and adults. Seniors who choose to live on their own, as well as their loved ones, should be aware of the risk factors associated with their choice. Physical changes can often reduce mobility while cognitive changes can be even more hazardous due to the fact that the individual may not realize that he/she is in danger. The side effects of prescribed medication and alcohol consumption can also add to the risks. Ageing family members should focus on these six priorities to protect themselves against a fire in their home.
1. Install a smoke alarm on each level of the home and near all sleeping areas. The alarms should be checked monthly and the batteries should be replaced twice a year.
2. Update your escape plan with your current capabilities in mind and make sure there are two ways out of each room.
3. If you’re a smoker, never smoke in bed and make sure to soak the ashes in water before discarding them.
4. Never leave cooking food unattended. Turn off the burner if you have to step away from the stove. Clean the exhaust fan and the duct above the stove regularly.
5. Each fall, have the furnace and the chimney inspected by a professional. Keep flammable materials at least three feet away from space heaters.
6. Because candles are an increasing cause of house fires, don’t keep them in your home. Choose Csa-approved electric lights instead. Don’t hesitate to ask family members to help you put safety measures into place.
Never leave cooking food unattended. Turn off the burner if you have to step away from the stove.