JACKSON, Miss. (WTVA) -- If you woke up to a fire in your home, how much time do you think you would have to get to safety?
According to the nonprofit National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), one-third of Americans households thought they would have at least six minutes before a fire in their home would become life threatening.
Unfortunately, the time available is often less.
The Mississippi State Fire Marshal’s Office is teaming up with NFPA during Fire Prevention Week, October 7-13, 2012, urging Mississippians to “Have Two Ways Out!”
This year’s theme stresses the importance of fire escape planning and practice.
Thus far this year 42 fire deaths in Mississippi have been investigated by the State Fire Marshal’s Office.
In 2010, U.S. fire departments responded to 369,500 home structure fires.
These fires caused 13,350 civilian injuries, 2,640 civilian deaths, and $6.9 billion in direct damage.
“One home structure was reported every 85 seconds in 2010,” State Fire Marshal Mike Chaney said.
“Fire is unpredictable and moves faster than most people realize. Having a tried and true escape plan with two ways out is essential to ensuring your family’s safety should fire break out in your home.”
Deputies from the State Fire Marshal’s Office are offering family escape planning and other fire safety tips at the Mississippi State Fair through October 14.
The State Fire Marshal’s Office recommends the following tips for planning your family’s escape:
Make a map of your home. Mark a door and a window that can be used to get out of every room.
Choose a meeting place outside in front of your home. This is where everyone can meet once they have escaped. Draw a picture of your outside meeting place on your escape plan.
Write the emergency telephone number for the fire department on your escape plan.
Have a grown-up sound the smoke alarm and practice your escape plan with everyone living in your home.
Keep your escape plan on the refrigerator and remind grown-ups to have your family practice the plan twice a year or whenever anyone in your home celebrates a birthday.