Each minute, a fire can double in size. Having a home fire escape plan is one of the most important things you can do for your family.  Home Fire Escape Planning

A floor plan of your home

Draw a map of your home with all members of your household. Be sure to include every level and room as well as stairways and hallways. Practice your plan twice a year, once at night and once during the day using different ways out. Your home escape plan should include:

Two ways out of every room

  • The first way out should be using the door and the second way out could be through a window. Make sure windows can be opened easily
  • Not all rooms have two exits. In this case, make sure that everyone knows how to exit a room safely
  • If you see smoke on your way out, use your secondary exit
  • If you must escape through smoke, get low and go beneath the smoke

A meeting place outside the home

  • Make sure all family members know where to meet outside the home and mark it on the floor plan
  • A good meeting place would be a tree, telephone pole or a neighbour's home
  • Once you get outside, stay outside. Never go back inside a burning building

If you live in an apartment

  • Always use stairs, never use an elevator in case of fire
  • When the alarm sounds, elevators may be grounded and in control of the responding firefighters. Even if the elevator appears to be working, do not use it as it could take you to the floor where the fire is burning
  • If fire or smoke blocks your exit, protect yourself and your family in place:
    • Close your apartment door, but do not lock it
    • Cover all cracks where smoke could enter using wet towels or tape
    • Call 9-1-1 even if firefighters are already on site and tell them the number of your apartment
    • Wave a sheet or towel from the window to help firefighters locate you
    • Try to stay calm and listen for instructions from fire personnel