Oct 11, 2018 by David Yeomans
According to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), fires cause billions of dollars worth of property damage each year in the United States. Additionally, thousands of people are killed and tens of thousands are injured. Sadly, seniors are the ones most at risk. The U.S. Fire Administration notes that "older adults face the greatest relative risk of dying in a fire... a 2.7 times greater risk of dying in a fire than the total population... [and seniors] 85 and over were 3.8 times more likely to die in a fire than the total population." Yet, there is good news. Seniors can significantly reduce their risk of fire-related death, injury, and loss by taking a few relatively easy precautions and having the right measures in place. Consider these tips from Comfort Keepers elder care services.
Smoke detectors provide a great first line of defense, but they only help if they are operational. Be sure to check smoke detectors every month and change batteries twice a year.
ABC-rated fire extinguishers can help seniors keep small fires from becoming large ones; they can also help create a path of escape. Fire extinguishers should have their charge checked when smoke detector batteries are changed. Seniors who are not sure how to use their fire extinguishers should contact their local fire department for help.
Create an escape plan that takes into consideration the various rooms a senior could be in during a fire as well as any disabilities or limitations that could hinder their safe escape.
Never leave food cooking on the stove or in the oven when leaving the home. Setting a timer when cooking can help seniors remember that food is in the oven or simmering on the range.
Never cover up space heaters and ensure they are at least 3 feet away from curtains, beds, and other flammable materials.
Get help when needed. Comfort Keepers elder care services can help your loved one check smoke detectors and fire extinguishers, create and practice escape plans, organize the home, prepare meals, and even perform a detailed home safety inspection.
For more information about fire safety and risk reduction or to learn more about the many ways Comfort Keepers elder care services can help your senior loved one safely age in place, contact a senior home care coordinator today.
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Outlying areas also served (service delivery fees may apply): Ohio - Stockport, Barlow, Barlett, Beverly, Coal Run, Coolville, Cutler, Fleming, Little Hocking, Long Bottom, Lowell, New Matamoras, Newport, Portland, Reedsville, Reno,Tuppers Plains, Waterford, Watertown and Whipple. West Virginia - Belleville, Belmont, Davisville, Rockport, Sandyville, Saint Mary’s, Sherman and Waverly.