Maui News

10 Tips for Fire Prevention & Safety

October 9, 2017, 12:57 PM HST
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File photo of a live fire demonstration conducted during Fire Prevention Week last year. This week, the Maui Fire Department will host a similar demonstration to show the effectiveness of home sprinklers. File photo by Wendy Osher.

During National Fire Prevention Week, Oct. 8 to 14, 2017, the Maui Fire Department wants to remind residents that “Every Second Counts! Plan 2 Ways Out!”

The MFD is holding special demonstrations on two Fridays in October (see below) to help education the public and help build awareness about fire safety.

Imagine this scenario: You and your family are fast asleep at 2 a.m. when the smoke alarm sounds. What do you do?

If you and your family don’t have a plan in place, it could jeopardize your safety, or even prove deadly.

In a typical home fire, you may have as little as one to two minutes to escape safely from the time the smoke alarm sounds. That’s why home escape planning is so critical in a fire situation. It ensures that everyone in the household knows how to use that small window of time wisely.

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“Developing and practicing a home escape plan is like building muscle memory,” said MFD Chief Jeffrey Murray. “That pre planning is what everyone will draw upon to snap into action and escape as quickly as possible in the event of a fire.”

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This year’s Fire Prevention Week theme, “Every Second Counts: Plan 2 Ways Out!” works to better educate the public about the critical importance of developing a home escape plan and practicing it.

The MFD is working in coordination with the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), the official sponsor of Fire Prevention Week, for more than 90 years to reinforce those potentially life-saving messages.

“Home escape planning is one of the most basic but fundamental elements of home fire safety, and can truly make the difference between life and death in a fire situation,” said Lorraine Carli, NFPA’s vice president of Outreach and Advocacy.

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In support of Fire Prevention Week, NFPA and the Maui Fire Department offer the folowoing tips and recommendations for developing and practicing a home escape plan.

  1. Households should develop a plan together and practice it.
  2. A home escape plan includes working smoke alarms on every level of the home, in every bedroom, and near all sleeping areas.
  3. It also includes two ways out of every room; usually a door and a window, with a clear path to an outside meeting place (such as a tree, light pole, or mailbox) that’s a safe distance from the home.
  4. Draw a map of your home with all members of your household.
  5. On the map, mark two exits from each room and a path to the outside from each exit.
  6. Practice your home fire drill twice a year. Conduct one at night and one during the day
    with everyone in your home, and practice using different ways out.
  7. Teach children how to escape on their own in case you can’t help them.
  8. Make sure the number of your home is clearly marked and easy for the fire department
    to find.
  9. Close doors behind you as you leave. This may slow the spread of smoke, heat, and fire.
  10. Once you are outside, stay outside. Never go back inside a burning building.

The MFD is also holding Fire Prevention Week Demonstrations that are open to the public as well as the local elementary schools.

Department officials will provide a fire safety presentation followed by a display of the tools and equipment the fire service uses.

MFD personnel will also demonstrate how they rappel, cut up cars with our “Jaws of Life,” and put out fires with a live fire demonstration.

MFD’s Air-1 Helicopter, Sparky the Fire Dog, and Smokey Bear will also be making appearances.

There will be two shows on Maui:

  • Friday, Oct. 20, from 9:30 to 11:30 a.m. at the Lahaina Recreation Field, mauka of
    the Lahaina Aquatics Center on Shaw Street.
  • Friday Oct. 27, from 9:30-11:30 a.m. at the Horseshoe Pit in Keopuolani Park,
    Wailuku.

For more information, contact the Fire Prevention Bureau at (808) 876-4690 or email [email protected].

To learn more about this year’s Fire Prevention Week campaign, “Every Second Counts: Plan 2
Ways Out” and home escape planning, visit www.firepreventionweek.org.

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