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Emergency Preparedness 2016

Dalton Daily CItizen, Dalton Magazine

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12 Be Prepared — Emergency Guide In the tragic event a fire does occur, every family should have an escape plan in place. The National Fire Prevention Association recommends families work together to create an escape plan, by walking through the home to inspect all possible exits and escape routes. For households with children, it's recommended to draw a floor plan of the home, marking two clear routes out of each room, including windows and doors. The location of each smoke alarm also should be marked. Including the entire family can make for an educational exercise that also has a clear focus on safety. Practice, practice, practice Once the plan is in place, families are recommended to run through periodic drills to ensure all members of the family understand the plan and can problem solve and recognize the best exits depending on the situation. For homes with windows with security bars or extra security measures, make sure they have release devices inside to ensure they can be opened immediately in the event of an emergency. In the event of a real fire, find the clearest path out and move that direction, making sure to close doors along the way. A closed door will help slow the spread of the fire, along with smoke and potentially toxic gas, and allow more time to escape. Other considerations Families also should choose an outside meeting place (such as a neighbor's house, light post, mailbox or stop sign) a safe distance away from the home so everyone can rendezvous outside. Make sure to mark the location of the meeting place on the escape plan. It's also recommended that homeowners make sure the street number and house number are clearly visible from the road, to assist potential responders and fire personnel in finding the house quickly in the event of a fire. House numbers can be installed easily to a home or curb, if needed. Everyone in the home also should memorize any necessary emergency phone numbers (local fire department, family, etc.). The NFPA notes that doing so will increase response time by allowing the first person out of the house to call immediately for assistance. Know your escape plan

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