Each year more people die and are injured in house fires than bushfires. In 2015 there were 1,565 preventable house fires in Melbourne resulting in the loss of five lives and causing almost $30 million property damage.
- 45 per cent of those fires started in the kitchen
- 9 per cent in the bedroom
- 5 per cent in the lounge room
- 4 per cent in the laundry
There are some very simple rules to follow to help keep you safe in your home. Print them out and discuss them with your partner, family or housemates. They could save your life one day.
Keep emergency numbers near the phone
- Ensure emergency numbers are keyed into all the phones in your home.
- Dial 000 (triple zero) for fire, police and ambulance.
- It’s never too early to teach children how to responsibly contact emergency services.
Practise your home fire escape plan regularly
- Identify the quickest, safest way to get out of the house from every room,
including upper floors.
- Agree on a place to meet outside (letter box or nature strip) and practise it.
- Ensure your house number is clearly visible so emergency services can find you quickly.
- Document your plan.
Stop, drop, cover and roll
- If your clothes catch fire – stop, drop, cover your face with your hands and roll to smother the flames.
- To help someone else, throw a woollen blanket over them to extinguish the flames.
Get down low and go go go!
- If there’s smoke in your house, get down low and go, go, go!
- In a fire, the safest area for breathing is near the floor where the air is cooler and cleaner, so remember to crawl low in smoke.
Check doors for heat before opening
- Use the back of your hand to check for heat, then get down low and crawl to safety.
- Close doors behind you if possible. If the door is hot, use another exit.
- Get everyone out of the house as quickly as possible.
Call the fire brigade
- Call the fire brigade from a neighbour’s house, public or mobile phone and wait for them to arrive.
- Tell them where the fire is and if anyone is still inside.
- Never go back inside for any reason.