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Take precautions to prevent fire tragedy

Staff Report • Oct 8, 2012 at 9:39 AM

Public safety officials in Tennessee are encouraging state residents to have a fire escape plan in place for their homes and to practice it with their families. Today is the start of Fire Prevention Week in Tennessee, and the state Fire Marshal’s Office is recommending that families develop escape plans that include two ways out of a burning building.

Tennessee continually ranks among the five worst states in the nation when it comes to the number of residents killed in house fires. Many of those lives might have been saved by an escape plan and a properly functioning smoke detector. It’s important to have a smoke alarm on each level of the house, inside every bedroom and outside the bedrooms in each sleeping area.

The Consumer Product Safety Commission also advises homeowners to be careful with space heaters. Local emergency officials have seen a marked increase in the number of residential fires in recent years, some of which have been sparked by auxiliary heating devices.

Be sure that you are following all the safety precautions listed on the devices. That includes keeping the heater at least 3 feet from drapes, furniture and other flammable materials.

Don’t invite tragedy. Make sure your smoke detectors are working properly and that your family has two ways out of a burning home.

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