Thank you for supporting small business! | Free 2-4 Day Shipping on Feature Products

Involving Kids in Fire Safety

fire safety

This week is national fire prevention week. Why is fire safety an important topic for a child safety blog?

In 2014, 249 children from birth to age 14 died in fires; the fifth most common cause of fatality for 1 to 4-year-olds and the third most common for 5 to 9-year-olds, according to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC). Eighty-seven percent of all fire-related deaths are because of home fires.

fire safety

Home fires are most common between the months of December and February (because of heating systems) and between the hours of 6 p.m. and 7 p.m. The most common cause (46%) is cooking accidents. Home fires can spread rapidly, leaving families as little as 2 minutes to escape once an alarm sounds.

Unfortunately, many children try to hide from a fire, often in a closet, under a bed, or in a corner. And oftentimes children are frightened by firefighters in all of their gear. But they are taught basic fire facts, they will be better able to protect themselves; and if they are shown what firefighters look like in full gear with masks on, they know it is a safe person there to help.

One of the most important things to teach your kids is that fires spread quickly and most fire-related deaths are not from burns but from smoke inhalation; dangerous fumes can overpower a person, especially a child, in just a few minutes.

Fired up about fire safety

car seat safety newsletter

Fire safety is more than know what to do if your clothes catch on fire (stop, drop and roll by the way). Fire safety is learning what you need to know to make your home safe to hopefully prevent fire and what to do if a fire starts in your house.

When it comes to fire safety there are three important steps: tips to prevent fire, plans for just in case and practicing those plans.

Tips to help prevent fires:

  1. Teach kids never to play with matches and lighters. Make a habit of placing these items up and away from young children. More than 100,00 fires are caused every year from  kids playing with lighters and matches.
  2. Use common sense in the kitchen.
    • Always cook with an adult present.
    • Play outside of the kitchen.
    • Limit distractions when cooking.
    • Stay in the room if there is a hot oven or stove.
    • Keep towels or other flammables away from stove area.
  3. Blow out candles before you leave the room or before you go to sleep.
  4. Keep clothes and other flammables away from lamps, heating units and fireplaces.
  5. Only plug in the allowed amount into a single electrical outlet.
  6. Be aware of additional hazards during the holidays.

Plan for just in case:

  1. Smoke alarms are a critical first step in staying safe. And they have to work so make sure your smoke alarms are in working condition. Ideally, you should have smoke detectors on every level of your home and in each sleeping area. Working smoke alarms reduce the chances of dying in a fire by nearly 50 percent.
  2. fire safety planCreate a home fire escape plan with two ways out of every room in case of a fire and a designated meeting place outside of the house, like a mailbox or a neighbor’s house. Download this worksheet from Safe Kids Worldwide.
  3. Make sure any possible escape routes are accessible by children; furniture is out of the way and windows are easy to open.
  4. Teach children to get low and get out of the house when they hear a smoke alarm. Previous coaching gives children a better chance at being safe.
  5. Teach children how to:
    • cover their mouth and noses with a moist towel or piece of clothing
    • crawl under smoke to safety
    • touch any door (not the doorknob) to check if it’s hot
    • know another way out if the door is hot
    • stop, drop and roll in case their clothing catches on fire
  6. Always know where the nearest “Fire Exit” is if you live in or are visiting a large multiple story building.
  7. Have an fire-proof escape ladder if one of your exit routes is via a two-story window.
  8. Remember to leave all your personal belongings and to stay out once you are out.

Practicing those plans:

  1.  Practice, practice, practice. Take the time to practice your plan if you hear the smoke alarm or see smoke.
  2. Time your practice; make it as fast as you can. An entire house could be engulfed in flames in 3 minutes so move, move, move.

There is a reason kids have fire drills at school and adults have them in the workplace. Fires are scary and people can panic but rehearsing different scenarios helps you and your family be ready and be able to take action automatically.

There’s a fire and I can’t get out, what do I do?

If your escape route(s) is blocked by fire or smoke and you can’t get out fast, you’ll need to yell for help. The best way to do this is through an open window if there is one or by calling 911 if you have a phone with you.

The firefighters will have a hard time finding you if you are hiding so stay out in the open room. Firefighters or other adults will be looking for you, the sooner they can find you, the sooner you can both get to safety. While you are waiting, keep the heat and smoke from getting in by blocking any cracks around the door with sheets, blankets or clothing. And place clothing or a towel over your mouth, preferably a wet cloth.

Once you’re out, stay out. Do not go back in for anything — even pets; you can tell the firefighters about any pets that were left behind and they may be able to help.

We want to know, have you ever experienced a home fire? Share your comments below.

By Amie Durocher, Creative Director at Safe Ride 4 Kids and certified CPS Tech since 2004

Copyright 2016 Safe Ride 4 Kids. All rights reserved. You may not publish, broadcast, rewrite or redistribute this material without permission. You are welcome to link to Safe Ride 4 Kids or share on social media.

© londondeposit | depositphotos


  1. You’ve outlined some excellent ways to prevent fires in this article. Exit plans are extremely important. The HAVEN is another safety device that is meant to protect families, provide a safe exit and reduce fire and water damage. I would check this out as an alternative to regular fire extinguishers! All the best!

  2. Yes, I agree with you that we should teach our children that how we can save us from the fire and also take some fire safety measures.

Post a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Stay Updated!

Sign up for our monthly newsletter.

news, updates, promotions

Thank you and welcome!
You have been subscribed.

us map car seat law updates

Subscribe for Updates

Get news and updates including updates on changes in state car seat laws by subscribing to our monthly newsletter.

Thank you for Subscribing! We'll see you at our next newsletter! 

4+ Stages of car seats

Get a basic understanding of the 4(+) Stages of Child Restraints your child will go through over the years with this cheat sheet.

You have Successfully Subscribed!

10 mistakes report

Do you know for sure if your kids are riding in the car safe?

After all 3 out of 4 of all car seats are being used incorrectly and 93% of newborns are in their car seats with critical errors. Learn how to fix the most common car seat mistakes with this report.

You have Successfully Subscribed!

make every arrival a safe arrival

Enter your name and email then click the button below to pledge and receive our news, tips and updates.

Thank you for Subscribing! We'll see you at our next newsletter! 

safer driving during pregnancy

Find out everything you need to know about the risks involved with driving during pregnancy and how to keep you and your baby as safe as possible in the car.

You have Successfully Subscribed!

Get car seat and child safety updates, tips and reminders with our monthly newsletter. You'll also get new product and promotion announcements first.

Thank you for Subscribing! We'll see you at our next newsletter!