(Photo by Victoria Gloria)
This is my family. I would do anything to keep them safe. And I know you would do the same for yours!
We had the opportunity last week to work with our favorite morning show, Good Morning America, on testing out the results of a new study that states 80% of children between the ages of 2-13 don’t wake up for a fire alarm. The results were really eye opening as a parent. Let me preface with this: of course we knew our kids aren’t fully aware of what an actual fire entails, and of course we are the ones responsible for getting them out of the house. They are 3 and 1…they obviously can’t help themselves. But to know they might not even wake up to the sound of a fire alarm was pretty shocking! You can see the footage right here. The comments from my family and friends made me realize that this topic isn’t discussed enough, and I wanted to share a little about family fire safety and fire safety items you need in your home.
I was so confident that our children would wake up that I had been nervous about it ALL morning the day of filming. Mainly, I was concerned about Landon freaking out and having a hard time falling back asleep. We planned for it to be a long night with having to get the kids resettled and planned to do our bed time routine all over again if they woke up frantic. I truly did NOT think they would actually stay asleep. If you watch the video, you can see I almost look like I’m about to cry. I was truly holding tears back because all I could think is what if I slept through it too? Granted, we are light sleepers as parents…but still! It was very eye opening, and I’m grateful we had this experience to give us insight.
I’m realizing this topic is one that’s not often discussed as it should be between families, and I had many people asking about our personal fire plan and what we have for fire safety. Our fire plan is very basic. Get the kids and get out. When we purchased our home, it was crucial that all of our bedrooms were on the same level in the event of a fire. Even the dog sleeps upstairs with us (with the exception of tearing his ACL and not being able to climb stairs). I put together a short list of items I believe all families should have in their homes for fire safety. These are items we have ourselves!
Nest Protect Smoke & Carbon Monoxide Alarm. This is the fire alarm system we have. We have a fire alarm in our downstairs near the stairwell, every bedroom, and the hallway. We recently upgraded it because this system actually connects to our phones and alerts us if there’s a fire (and even specifies which room it’s in). We liked having this as an option because if we aren’t home and a fire starts, we know to call 911 (especially since we have a dog at home!). The device actually talks as well as sounds an alarm, and it will say, “FIRE! EMERGENCY!” repeatedly, as well at the room the fire is located in. They’re all connected to each other as well, so when one goes off the others immediately sound. It’s really given us peace of mind! We just need to keep in mind that our kids will most likely not wake up (and why would they…they don’t know the difference!) so we need to act immediately and get them OUT.
Fire Escape Ladder. We have one of these in our bedroom next to the bed in order to escape from our second story. I highly recommend testing it out ahead of time. You don’t want to wake for an emergency to figure out how to use it.
Fire Extinguisher. So important to have in the home, for ANY reason. We have two, one for each story of our home.
Fire Mask. These are helpful because they’ll provide you with 60 minutes of filtered air from heavy smoke and harmful, noxious gases during a fire. One for each family member is key!
Fire Blanket. Another great option instead of a fire extinguisher, or it can be wrapped about you to avoid burns. I actually just ordered a few of these! I feel like having one for the car might be a good idea as well?
Fire Escape Bag. This is great for getting babies and pets out safely especially if you have more than one level!
Sometimes toddlers and children have trouble truly understanding something that’s not immediately in front of them, and I’m learning that books are great way to help with that. I found a few fire safety books for kids that might help explain what could happen!
I realize it’s an investment to purchase these items, but why take the chance? I would rather have everything I need to get us out safely than potentially lose a life. It’s not something to take lightly, and our Good Morning America segment opened my eyes up to that even more. Talk to your children about a fire plan and PRACTICE THAT PLAN. They even have a variety of fire safety books for kids in order to help explain things for little ones. You don’t want to wait for an emergency to figure things out. And please don’t have the “it will never happen to me” mentality. It’s not worth it!