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February 2016

Remembering When™: Texas takes on senior safety!

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Tx
After the national Remembering When™ conference last year, the Texas State Fire Marshal’s Office headed back to Texas on a mission. It was not Mission Impossible but rather Mission Accomplished as their first training took place today.  More than 70 participants attended the first Remembering When training held in Texas.

This senior adult fire and fall prevention program equips fire departments and home visiting agencies with the tools to help senior adults live in their homeRememberingwhens longer and more safely. Today’s training was the first of a series of outreach projects geared at the most vulnerable group of citizens when it comes to fires. Remembering When™ is a free online educational program that includes a how to guide for educators and home visitors to learn about group presentations, home visits, and smoke alarm installations. The training today concentrated on the 8 fire and 8 fall prevention safety tips, a home safety checklist, and other resources for home visitors and their fire service colleagues. This team approach brings the credibility and sustainability that is needed to create and maintain this exciting program.

According to Mathew Hodges of the Texas State Fire Marshal’s office “ This is the first step in helping aging Texans live in safe homes by giving them fire and fall prevention safety tips”. So far in 2016, at least 5 senior adults have died in home fires and last year more than 35 senior adults died in Texas. Through partnerships like this, lives will be saved across the great state of Texas. Mission Accomplished!

 

If you can’t smell or see carbon monoxide – How do you beat this silent killer?

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CO Charlotte
With a winter storm behind us and about 2 months of cold temperatures still to come, carbon monoxide is a major concern all year but especially now. Last week, Charlotte Fire Department, Kidde Fire Safety and NFPA teamed up to educate the public on carbon monoxide safety. On the heels of the two family members that lost their life in South Carolina when a generator was closed in a garage and a carbon monoxide alarm that sounded after a faulty heater in Marion NC, safety advocates worked with the media to let the citizens of the two states know about what carbon monoxide is, the signs and symptoms of CO, and safety tips.

Carbonmonoxidecover

Having a working carbon monoxide alarm on each level of your home can save your life. The Medical Director of the Carolinas Poison Center was on site to discuss the symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning. NFPA has a Carbon Monoxide Community Toolkit that has free resources at your fingertips. Whether you need information on generator safety with our partners the Consumer Product Safety Commission or a 10 minute mini lesson- we are here to help.

 

Maryland man says carbon monoxide alarm saved his life

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CO tips sheet in SpanishDon Anderson of Marion, North Carolina, was taking a nap on a recent day when his combination smoke-carbon monoxide alarm sounded. "The beeping woke me up," he said. He called the fire department and fire inspector Kevin Owenby said he smelled an odor as he walked into the house. The other firefighter on the scene started having headaches after they got Anderson out of the home.

According to a news report, all three of them tested positive for elevated levels of carbon monoxide. Anderson said that he since learned that the gas logs he'd been using to heat his home were broken.

CarbonmonoxidecoverNFPA's community toolkit on carbon monoxide alarms, co-sponsored with the Consumer Product Safety Commission, provides everything public educators need to motivate residents to install and maintain carbon monoxide alarms: safety tips sheets, in English and Spanish, easy to read handouts in multiple languages, talking points, a mini-lesson, and community outreach ideas.

 

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Hut, Hut, Hike! 6 “game day" strategies for a fire safe Super Bowl Sunday

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Did you know that Super Bowl Sunday ranked #6 behind Thanksgiving, Christmas and Memorial Day in 2013 as having the largest numbers of estimated reported home fires on a holiday? According to NFPA’s 2015 Home Fires Involving Cooking Equipment report, an annual average of 590 home cooking fires occurred on Super Bowl Sunday in 2013. That’s a 25% increase over the average number of fires on a typical day!  Super Bowl

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) tells us that Super Bowl Sunday is also the second biggest day of the year for food consumption! So if you’re planning to whip up some tasty snacks for this year’s game, make sure you add kitchen fire safety “plays” to your line up.

What’s the best way to do that? The U.S. Fire Administration (USFA) offers a handful of great tips below that are easy to follow:

1. Kitchen Huddle
Prepare your cooking area. Use back burners or turn pot handles toward the back of the stove. Move things that can burn away from the stove. Keep a timer handy and use it when you’re roasting or baking.

2. Penalty Flag
Frying poses the greatest risk of fire. Keep an eye on what you fry. Start with a small amount of oil and heat it slowly. If you see smoke or if the grease starts to boil in your pan, turn the burner off. Even a small amount of oil on a hot burner can start a fire.

3. Defense
Stay awake and alert while you’re cooking. Stand by your pan. If you leave the kitchen, turn the burner off. Keep a large pan lid or baking sheet nearby in case you need to smother a pan fire.

4. Illegal Contact
Prevent burns when you’re cooking. Wear short sleeves, or roll them up. Don’t lean over the burner. Use potholders and oven mitts to handle hot or steaming cookware.

5. Defensive Linemen
Children need constant adult supervision. If you have young children in the home, keep them three feet from anything that can get hot, including the stove. Put hot objects and liquids beyond a child’s reach so they can’t touch or pull them down. Never hold a child when you cook.

6. Touchdown!
Keep safety in mind when serving on game day, too. If you burn candles, position them out of reach of children and away from anything that can burn. Consider using flameless candles that are lit by battery power instead. Food warmers and slow cookers get hot. Place them toward the back of the serving table so they won’t get knocked off. Provide hot pads to prevent burns. Light the chafing dish fuel can after it is placed under the warmer. Make sure nothing comes in contact with the flame. If young children are in your home, supervise them and keep matches and lighters locked away.

For more fire safety information, visit USFA's webpage. Additional resources can also be found on NFPA's Cooking Fire Safety web pages.

Enjoy the game, everyone, and please stay safe!