In Case of Fire…
مساحة حرة MAR 14, 2019

Lebanese houses are not equipped with any fire prevention kits. Rare are the buildings that have fire escape stairs and rare are the people who actually know how to stop or even prevent fires. It is true that firefighters and civil defense aim to save us in case of fire, but we can always be ready as sometimes we must act spontaneously. How many times were we in the kitchen while cooking and we left a frying pan on the stove unattended? How many times were we cold during the winter and we left a portable heater too close to inflammable objects (bedding, clothing or furniture)? How many times did we forget to blow out the candles we lit around our houses? Those incidents often happen, and we get lucky most of the times when nothing happens, since we get to them on time. However, unfortunately we can’t always be that quick.

Therefore, and in order to keep ourselves on the safe side, here are some tips to keep our places fire free:

Safety in the kitchen: the kitchen is the room where most of the fire hazards occur and the most dangerous equipments are placed: the stove, the oven, the gas and the electrical items. Hence, we should always pay attention and follow precautions that will reduce any risk:

-Install a fire extinguisher and blanket, and learn how to use them;

-Never leave the stove or oven unattended;

-Keep electrical use and equipments far from water (the sink).

Safety in the living rooms: the living room is where everything happens and where everybody sits, from people who live in the house to visitors. So you can never be too sure of what is going on in there. Mainly, in this room, smoking and heaters are the main reasons behind fires. To stay safe and prevent anything bad from happening:

-Always provide large and stable ashtrays. Burning cigarettes ends can smoke for hours before igniting;

-Ensure matches and lighters are out of reach for children;

-Do not smoke if you are feeling sleepy, because you can never know where you are flicking and/or stubbing it;

-Keep all flammable materials at a safe distance from heaters;

-Read the heaters instructions before using them;

-Never leave it on when you leave the room and close the door.

Safety in the bedrooms: the bedroom is where a fire might occur and you never notice. You can be asleep and never notice the fire, which is why you should always be precautious before going to bed and make an overall check up on the house:

-Switch off and unplug all appliances before going to bed;

-make sure that the candles you lit during the day are put out, and if you need to keep it lit make sure to put it in a proper stable holder;

-never smoke in bed;

-always check your electric blankets (if you have one)

-never close your bedroom door if you have a heater on.

If you follow these prevention tips you should be safe, and no fire will occur. However, keep in mind that sometimes fire can be ignited because of an electrical short circuit. So, whenever you smell like something is burning, unplug or cut the power of the appliance. Always keep many fire extinguishers around the house, just in case. If you don’t have one, you can try to put out the fire with a blanket, you cover the fire with the blanket to smother it. You can also install at least one or two smoke/heat detector alarms on the ceiling of your place, to be immediately alerted if something is burning or smoking.

And if you feel like you are not able to put out a fire and you need to evacuate, never use the elevator, and always use the stairs, and call: 125.

مساحة حرة MAR 14, 2019
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