Many older adults, already feeling isolated due to COVID-19, are now facing the threat of wildfires. In the United States, nearly 45 million homes border or intermingle with wildlands and more than
72,000 U.S. communities are currently at risk.If you live in an area at risk for wildfires, now is the perfect time to review your safety plans on behalf of the senior in your life. Because seniors may be hearing impaired, have mobility issues or other underlying conditions like heart disease and COPD, they are more at risk from fire death than the general population. In fact, in 2015 older adults represented 15 percent of the United States population but suffered 40 percent of all fire deaths, according to the U.S. Fire Administration (USFA).By taking steps ahead of time to prepare for a wildfire event, family caregivers can help keep the aging loved ones safe.
Before a wildfire, take these steps, as recommended by the
Environmental Protection Agency, to make sure older adults in your life are prepared.
For more general fire safety tips for older adults, visit the USFA website to find the
Fire-Safe Seniors Program.