SOURCE: Pella Corporation

The Integer Group

September 25, 2014 12:30 ET

Pella® Windows and Doors Encourages You to 'Close the Door on Fire!'

Plan, Practice a Home Fire Escape Plan During the Day, and at Night

PELLA, IA--(Marketwired - September 25, 2014) - According to the U.S. Fire Administration, more than 3,400 Americans die each year in fires, and about 17,500 are injured. Tragically, about seven people a day die in home fires in the United States. That's why now's the time to plan and practice how you could exit your home safely in the event of a fire.

"Help protect your loved ones by making home safety a priority," said Kathy Krafka Harkema, Pella fire and window safety educator. "Designate two exits from each room of your home, through a door and a window, to get out quickly in the event of an emergency. Test the windows and doors to make sure they open quickly and easily. If they don't, or they are painted or nailed shut, replace them for safety's sake."

Develop and practice a home fire escape plan, and test it with everyone in your household by conducting a daytime and a nighttime drill.

"Since most home fires occur at night, a nighttime drill helps you prepare for that possibility," Krafka Harkema said. "Plus, some people can sleep right through an alarm, so it's important to assign someone to awaken sound sleepers, and to assist young children or those with limited mobility to help them exit the home quickly in an emergency."

Through its Close the door on fire!™ campaign, Pella encourages you to observe home safety tips year-round:

  • Identify fire safety risks inside your home and immediate surroundings. Equip your garage with smoke detectors since garage fires can start easily and spread quickly.
  • Identify two exits -- designate two exits from every room in your home -- a door and a window. Make sure doors and windows open quickly and easily to help ensure a quick exit; if not, replace them for safety's sake.
  • Keep exit routes free of clutter to help reduce tripping or falling hazards, as you may be crawling through smoke or in the dark in a power outage to exit in an emergency.
  • Create a home fire escape plan and practice it at least twice a year with everyone in your household. Make sure house sitters or babysitters are also familiar with your plan.
  • To make your own plan, download a fire escape grid from Pella and draw a floor plan of each level of your home.
  • Install and regularly test smoke alarms in bedrooms and near sleeping areas on each level of your home.
  • Keep matches and lighters out of the reach of children, preferably in a cabinet with a child-resistant lock.
  • Keep candles at least one foot away from anything that can burn. Blow out candles when you leave the room, or before you go to sleep. Consider replacing traditional candles with electric candles, especially in homes with children and pets.
  • Completely extinguish outdoor fires like fire pits or grills when you're done with them, and never leave outdoor fires unattended.
  • If your home features more than one story, equip it with a fire escape ladder, easily accessed from upper-level bedrooms. Mark their location on your home fire plan and share this information with your family.
  • Keep fire extinguishers in your home, especially in the kitchen where many home fires start. Replace expired extinguishers.
  • Stay in the kitchen while cooking. If you must leave for a short time, turn off the stove. When baking, check the oven regularly, and use a timer to help make sure it's shut off when cooking's done.
  • Keep space heaters at least three feet from things that can burn. Turn off heaters when you leave the room, or before you go to sleep. Keep flammable objects, like rugs, bedding, clothing, furniture, curtains and decorations, away from portable heaters.

Now is also time to focus on window safety. Follow these tips to help keep your family safe:

  • To help protect children in the home, remember there's no substitute for adult supervision. Keep a child's play away from windows, doors and balconies. 
  • Teach children never to lean against a window or screen. Insect screens are designed to help keep insects out -- not to withstand the weight of a person.
  • Keep windows closed and locked when not in use to let in fresh air. When opening windows for ventilation, open those that a child cannot reach, like the upper sash on a double-hung window.
  • Keep furniture, like beds, dressers or sofas -- or anything children can climb -- away from windows.

"Pella is committed to safety, and that's why we encourage you to make time to think about safety in your own home," Krafka Harkema said. "For tools to start your home fire safety planning, Pella offers free information to help you prepare."

About Pella

Pella Corporation is a leader in designing, testing, manufacturing and installing quality windows and doors for new construction, remodeling and replacement applications.

As a family-owned and professionally managed privately-held company, Pella is known for its 89-year history of making innovative products, providing quality service and delivering on customer satisfaction. Headquartered in Pella, Iowa, the company is committed to incorporating new technologies, increasing productivity and practicing environmental stewardship to create satisfied customers.

For more information, call 888-847-3552 or visit pella.com/news. Follow Pella on Facebook, YouTube, Houzz, and Pinterest, and Twitter @Pella_News.

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