Protecting Seniors From Fire


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This is National Fire Prevention Week and a great time for seniors and their loved ones to make sure their homes are safeguarded against fires. Adults over the age of 65 have a fire death rate nearly two times the national average in the U.S. Over 75, that rate jumps to three times the national average.

Home Instead Senior Care has put together some fire prevention tips that seniors and those who love them should keep in mind.

 

Cooking

• Do not leave food unattended on the stove. If forgetfulness is an issue, it may be time to consider having someone else do the cooking.

• A lot of seniors choose loose clothing for comfort. While cooking, it’s a better idea to opt for something tighter with short sleeves. Take off any sweaters or jackets and try to wear clothing that is flame-retardant.

• Keep a pot lid handy to smother any pan fires.

• Clean the stove and appliances after each use to avoid crumb and grease build up.

• Do not use the oven to heat the house.

 

Heating Hazards

• Keep everything at least one foot away from every heat source and keep flammable items three feet away.

• Unplug electrical appliances and heaters when not in use.

• Never use an electrical heater to dry clothes.

• Never use a portable heater when you are sleeping or not at home.

• Make sure there are no curtains near a heat source.

 

While Sleeping

• Seniors should keep eyeglasses, a robe and slippers, house keys and a phone and/or emergency alert signal within arm’s reach of the bed.

• The bedroom door should always be shut during sleep.

 

In Case of Emergency

• Everyone should check their smoke alarms monthly. Seniors who wear hearing aids might consider purchasing a smoke alarm with strobe lights.

• Fire safety experts are now encouraging people to have two escape routes planned from every room in their home to the outside. That includes a plan for two sets of stairways for seniors living in apartments. Unfortunately, even if a senior is in a wheelchair, the elevator is never an option in a fire.

 

For more information and safety tips for seniors, call Home Instead Senior Care serving the Southeast Valley at 480-827-4343.

 

 

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