Nearly 150 years ago on this day, the Great Chicago Fire broke out and spread across the city for days.
Every year, the first full week of October is recognized as Fire Prevention Week in the U.S. to commemorate the tragedy that took 300 lives, destroyed thousands of buildings, and caused an estimated $200 million in damages.
In recognition of Fire Prevention Week, Knox-Center Township Fire Chief Kenny Pfost has offered up some safety tips to keep in mind all year long.
Those tips include things you should do such as keeping matches and lighters out of the reach of children and keeping portable space heaters at least 3 feet away from combustibles in all directions as well as things you should never do.
For instance, never leave food unattended while cooking, don’t leave extension cords as a permanent part of an electrical set up, don’t leave heated blankets or electronics on so long that they could catch fire, and never plug portable space heaters into power strips.
There are also a number of tips related to the life-saving devices that every home should be equipped with in order to be alerted to the presence of smoke or fire.
All homeowners should make sure to have at least one working smoke detector on every level of their home and one in every bedroom if the doors are closed.
Smoke detectors should be tested monthly and batteries should be replaced at least once a year. Any smoke detectors that are more than 10-years-old should be replaced.
To make sure your family is prepared if a fire occurs, practice fire exit drills on a monthly basis and be sure to include at least two ways out of your residence in case one of them is blocked.
For additional information and activities related to National Fire Prevention Week visit nfpa.org.