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2014

Planning on hosting a New Year's Eve party this year? What better way to ring in 2015 than with fire safety. With New Year's festivities comes food, food and more food. Have you planned how you will organize your time? There's nothing worse than letting the "tick tock" of the clock as it nears midnight distract you from your important tasks in the kitchen. Accidents happen when we're being rushed or careless in our attempt to join in the fun. Did you know that New Year's Day is one of the top five days for home fires? Let us all work on ways to change that ...

For instance, you might want to consider other options for your New Year's Eve buffet and January 1st breakfast or brunch event if you're already stressed about the time it'll take to prepare a hot meal while juggling important time with friends and family. Perhaps you prepare food that can be served cold or at warm temperature, or you bring everyone into the mix and offer a potluck type of approach where guests bring their favorite dish.  New year 2

If you're like our family, you'll be celebrating the holidays with friends and family who have come to visit well past January 1. It's important not to forget the importance of staying alert and fully present in the kitchen no matter what's happening in the room next door. NFPA and USFA's "Put a Freeze on Winter Fires" campaign can help you stay safer in the kitchen, and provides a number of great resources that are easy to download and keep handy for those times when you absolutely have to prepare meals for entire crew.

As we say in Italian, Buon Anno, tutti! Enjoy your end of the year celebration wherever that takes you! Stay safe one and all, and we'll see you in 2015. 

  FIREWORKS FOR BLOG
People around the world will celebrate the coming New Year with food, beverages, dancing and fireworks. Some will attend public events with hundreds of other revelers, while others will head to smaller gatherings or celebrations in private homes. Watch night services, a traditional late-night worship service, will draw those who want to reflect on the past year and prepare for the year ahead.

Whether the event is big or small, private or public, fire safety should be part of the planning. NFPA’s escape planning safety tips sheet tells us that if a fire breaks out in the home, you may only have a few minutes to get out safely.

  • Make a home escape plan. Draw a map of your home showing all doors and windows. Discuss it with everyone in your home, including guests.
  • Know at least two ways out of every room.
  • If the smoke alarm sounds, get out and stay out.
  • Call the fire department from outside the home.

In addition to NFPA’s escape planning information, the Safety in Places of Public Assembly tips sheet provides information on how to prepare in case of an emergency in a public venue.

  • Establish a communication plan with family or friends in case you get separated.
  • When you enter the building, locate the exits immediately.
  • Share any concerns about overcrowding, candles, pyrotechnics or other heat sources, and blocked paths or exit doors with management and leave immediately if you don’t feel safe.

Making a toast to safety before the celebrating begins can provide a great start to a new year.

 

The gifts have been opened, the ornaments are starting to sag, and the fallen pine needles are multiplying daily – these are clear signs that it’s time to remove the Christmas tree and other holiday decorations from your home.

Christmas trees are flammable objects. The longer they’re in your home, the more they dry out, making them a significant fire hazard.

Nearly 40 percent of home fires that begin with Christmas trees occur in January. Although these fires aren’t common, when they do occur, they’re more likely to be serious. On average, one of every 40 reported home structure Christmas tree fires resulted in a death, as compared to an average of one death per 142 total reported home structure fires.

While many people choose to keep their Christmas trees and holiday decorations up for a few weeks after the holidays, the continued use of seasonal lighting and dried-out trees presents increased fire risks.

For recommendations on safely disposing of your Christmas tree, along with tips for safely putting away holiday decorations, visit “Put a Freeze on Winter Fires”, NFPA’s campaign with the United States Fire Administration (USFA).

TreesThe gifts have been opened, the ornaments are starting to sag, and the fallen pine needles are multiplying daily – these are clear signs that it’s time to remove the Christmas tree and other holiday decorations from your home. 

Christmas trees are flammable objects. The longer they’re in your home, the more they dry out, making them a significant fire hazard. NFPA statistics show that nearly 40 percent of home fires that begin with Christmas trees occur in January. Although these fires aren’t common, when they do occur, they’re more likely to be serious. On average, one of every 40 reported home structure Christmas tree fires resulted in a death, as compared to an average of one death per 142 total reported home structure fires. 

While many people choose to keep their Christmas trees and holiday decorations up for a few weeks after the holidays, the continued use of seasonal lighting and dried-out trees after the holidays presents increased fire risks. When people do dispose of their trees, NFPA recommends using the local community’s recycling program, if available. They should not be put in the garage or left outside.  

In addition, NFPA offers these tips and recommendations for safely removing electrical lights and decorations from Christmas trees, and ensuring that they’re in good condition for the following year: 

  • When unplugging electrical decorations, use the gripping area on the plugs. Never pull the cord to unplug a device from an electrical outlet. (Doing so can harm the cord’s wire and insulation, which can lead to an electrical fire or shock.) 
  • As you put away electrical light strings, take time to inspect each for damage. Throw out light sets if they have loose connections, broken sockets, or cracked or bare wires.  
  • Wrap each set of lights and put them in individual plastic bags, or wrap the lights around a piece of cardboard. 
  • Store electrical decorations away from children and pets, and put them in a dry place where they won’t be damaged by water or dampness.

For additional resources and information for a fire-safe winter season, visit “Put a Freeze on Winter Fires” , NFPA’s campaign with theUnited States Fire Administration (USFA).  

 

!http://nfpa.typepad.com/.a/6a00d8351b9f3453ef01bb07c7a2b7970d-800wi|border=0|src=http://nfpa.typepad.com/.a/6a00d8351b9f3453ef01bb07c7a2b7970d-800wi|alt=Fire Truck|title=Fire Truck|class=asset asset-image at-xid-6a00d8351b9f3453ef01bb07c7a2b7970d image-full img-responsive!
Conversations I’ve had with my sister recently about smoke alarm safety have paid off. For months, Sylvia has been concerned about the smoke alarms in her house. One alarm didn’t seem to be working and had her worried. She sent a request to the non-emergency page of the Montgomery County government website in Maryland where she lives, to have the fire department come to the house to inspect the alarms.


 

!http://nfpa.typepad.com/.a/6a00d8351b9f3453ef01b7c7230f55970b-320wi|src=http://nfpa.typepad.com/.a/6a00d8351b9f3453ef01b7c7230f55970b-320wi|alt=Sylvia and Lisa (2)|style=margin: 0px 0px 5px 5px;|title=Sylvia and Lisa (2)|class=asset asset-image at-xid-6a00d8351b9f3453ef01b7c7230f55970b img-responsive!Within a few days a fire truck rolled up to the curb. Firefighters confirmed her suspicions about the non-functioning alarm. And they had more news: The alarms in the house were 15 years old. On one alarm, firefighters couldn’t even find the date. They installed new smoke alarms with non-replaceable (long-life) batteries designed to remain effective for up to 10 years.


After the installation was completed, Sylvia sent me an email. “Thanks sis,” she said. “I feel safer now.” I sent one back. “Glad you took care of that. Now we can both sleep easier.”


!http://i.zemanta.com/313542220_80_80.jpg|src=http://i.zemanta.com/313542220_80_80.jpg|alt=|style=margin: 0px; padding: 0px; border: 0px currentColor; width: 80px; display: block; max-width: 100%;!Wreath's single red light bulb reminds residents about fire hazards

!http://i.zemanta.com/316478757_80_80.jpg|src=http://i.zemanta.com/316478757_80_80.jpg|alt=|style=margin: 0px; padding: 0px; border: 0px currentColor; width: 80px; display: block; max-width: 100%;!Door-to-door campaign reveals lack of smoke alarms in South Carolina community

No, this isn't NFPA staff
Sick and tired of singing or hearing "Jingle Bells" for the umpteenth time this year? Don't fret: the ingenious minds at NFPA have placed its stamp on the holiday classic. For those looking to add something new to the family's holiday singalong, or if you're simply looking to impress Aunt Edna, try the following song on for size. 

Sung in the same fashion as "Jingle Bells," NFPA's version, "Sprinkler Save," adds a little levity to a proven, life-saving device. And for those wondering: "Who the heck is Dude the Cat?" Read this. 

Kudos to NFPA's Marty Ahrens for crafting the lyrics.

 

Dinner’s on the stove

Fried chicken on its way

Kids get in a row;

It’s just another day

I go back around

To break up their darn fight

When the smoke alarm starts to sound

The flaming pan’s a sight.

 

Oh, sprinklers save, sprinklers save

Sprinklers save the day

Sprinklers keep the fire small

While help is on the way, Hey!

Sprinklers save, sprinklers save

Sprinklers save the day

Sprinklers keep the fire small

While help is on the way.

 

Apartment fire call

Smoke and screams inside

Firefighters kick in door

Search for those who cried 

Couch had been on fire

Sprinkler on it rained

Dude the cat was good and mad

But the fire was contained.

 

Oh, sprinklers save, sprinklers save

Sprinklers save the day

Sprinklers keep the fire small

While help is on the way, Hey!

Sprinklers save, sprinklers save

Sprinklers save the day

Sprinklers keep the fire small

While help is on the way!

 

Happy Holidays from NFPA's Fire Sprinkler Initiative team! Here's to a safer 2015! 

 

 !http://nfpa.typepad.com/.a/6a00d8351b9f3453ef01b7c721f9fe970b-320wi|src=http://nfpa.typepad.com/.a/6a00d8351b9f3453ef01b7c721f9fe970b-320wi|alt=Chambersburg Fire Winner Cropped|style=margin: 0px 0px 5px 5px;|title=Chambersburg Fire Winner Cropped|class=asset asset-image at-xid-6a00d8351b9f3453ef01b7c721f9fe970b img-responsive!The Chambersburg Fire Department, in Chambersburg, Pennsylvania, reports a successful year of fire prevention with the support of the Rolf H. Jensen Memorial Public Education Grant. In his final report to NFPA, Howard R. Leonard Jr., Emergency Services Chief, said the fire prevention team was especially pleased with the Remembering When program and found it be popular among older adult residents.


 

During 2014, Chambersburg Fire presented the program, “The Smoke Alarm is Sounding: Know What to Do.” The objective was to educate children under 12, parents, and older adults on escape planning, then conduct a fire drill with each group. The final objective was to install adequate smoke alarms in area homes.


Chief Leonard said the success of the program signals that it’s time to adjust the target demographic. In 2015, the fire department will target males 18 to 50 while continuing fire prevention education to children and older adults.


 

The deadline for applications for the next Rolf Jensen Grant is February 6, 2015.


!http://i.zemanta.com/315734305_80_80.jpg|src=http://i.zemanta.com/315734305_80_80.jpg|alt=|style=margin: 0px; padding: 0px; border: 0px currentColor; width: 80px; display: block; max-width: 100%;!Guest blogger Kelly Ransdell says new approaches keep the public interested in safety

Electrical Safety Foundation International (ESFI) provides many tips and resources to help prevent the common hazards that occur while celebrating the holidays. Many of their resrouces are also great visual pieces that are easily shared like the below 'Naughty and Nice' list. 

Visit their holiday safety website to check them all out, and to help you stay safe this season. 

Naughty_Nice_Infographic_FINAL

Timothy with Safety Clowns
A Georgia six-year-old is being heralded as a hometown hero for saving his family from fire. According to Northwest Georgia News, on the morning of November 14, Timothy Hall woke up to discover that his house was on fire and filling with smoke. Hall, who had recently learned escape planning and other fire safety lessons at his school from the Cedartown Fire Department fire safety clowns, woke his family and got them out of the house.

The Polk County Fire Department wanted to do something special for Timothy and gave him an award for valor during a presentation at his elementary school. He was also made an honorary firefighter.

Safety sourceThe December issue of Safety Source, NFPA's public education enewsletter, is now available for viewing. In this issue, you will find;  

  • Put a Freeze on Winter Fires and Project Holiday
  • Fire-safety materials for the family
  • NFPA recruiting for three public education positions
  • Children's videos highlight wildfire safety
  • Blog on microwave safety

Don't miss an issue! Sign up now and be the first to get the latest information on happenings in the public education division, activities, fire statistics, trends, educational tips, Sparky the Fire Dog® and more.

 

!http://nfpa.typepad.com/.a/6a00d8351b9f3453ef01bb07c691d5970d-800wi|border=0|src=http://nfpa.typepad.com/.a/6a00d8351b9f3453ef01bb07c691d5970d-800wi|alt=Full Tree Large 2|style=margin: 0px 5px 5px 0px;|title=Full Tree Large 2|class=asset asset-image at-xid-6a00d8351b9f3453ef01bb07c691d5970d img-responsive!Fire safety is never far from the minds of NFPA staff members, even when it comes to choosing decorations for the organization’s Christmas tree.


The 12-foot artificial tree stands majestically in the lobby of NFPA headquarters, adorned with traditional ribbons, ornaments, and lights.


Anyone who takes a close look will notice an added feature rarely seen on a Christmas tree–fire safety equipment.


 

[Smoke alarms | http://www.nfpa.org/smokealarms] and home fire sprinklers hang from the branches as a reminder of the important role these devices play in saving lives.


 

NFPA's safety tips on smoke alarms tell us that smoke alarms should be installed inside and outside of each bedroom and sleeping area, and on every level of the home, including the basement.


It is best to use interconnected alarms. When one sounds, they all sound.


 

Home fire sprinklers protect lives by keeping fires !http://nfpa.typepad.com/.a/6a00d8351b9f3453ef01b7c721e8b6970b-120wi|src=http://nfpa.typepad.com/.a/6a00d8351b9f3453ef01b7c721e8b6970b-120wi|alt=Smoke alarm tucked in tree 3|style=margin: 0px 0px 5px 5px;|title=Smoke alarm tucked in tree 3|class=asset asset-image at-xid-6a00d8351b9f3453ef01b7c721e8b6970b img-responsive! small. Because of the quick reaction of the sprinkler system, it can reduce the heat, flames, and smoke produced in a fire, allowing people more time to escape.


While the NFPA Christmas tree is festive, upon closer inspection it also has some valuable messages to share.


!http://i.zemanta.com/316032401_80_80.jpg|src=http://i.zemanta.com/316032401_80_80.jpg|alt=|style=margin: 0px; padding: 0px; border: 0px currentColor; width: 80px; display: block; max-width: 100%;!A holiday tune strikes the right chord for fire safety planning

!http://i.zemanta.com/316478757_80_80.jpg|src=http://i.zemanta.com/316478757_80_80.jpg|alt=|style=margin: 0px; padding: 0px; border: 0px currentColor; width: 80px; display: block; max-width: 100%;!Door-to-door campaign reveals lack of smoke alarms in South Carolina community

!http://i.zemanta.com/311681089_80_80.jpg|src=http://i.zemanta.com/311681089_80_80.jpg|alt=|style=margin: 0px; padding: 0px; border: 0px currentColor; width: 80px; display: block; max-width: 100%;!Texas fire officials focus on space heater as cause of house fire

With Christmas just a few more days away, for many of us our thoughts have turned from gift shopping for those special people on our list to food shopping for that delicious holiday meal we can't wait to serve. So as you begin your preparations, we here at NFPA stress the importance of fire safety, especially when you're in the kitchen.

Why is this so important? Because Christmas Eve and Christmas Day are at the top of the list for having the most cooking fires (Thanksgiving is number 1) in the U.S.! And with this important statistic, we recommend a few things to keep in mind to help lower your risk for accidents:

  • Keep an eye on what you fry
  • Be alert when cooking
  • Keep things that can catch fire away from cooking area

That's not so bad, is it? Hmmm, as a way to remember these quick three tips, maybe you can try it out in a new holiday family song! Oh, I may be smiling as I say this, but truly, NFPA is serious in its commitment to fire safety and to you, and we are here to support you all the way. Dinner

Our "Put a Freeze on Winter Fires" Campaign has some great resources you can use while preparing for the big day and the days that follow filled with good cheer, family and friends (and yes, even more eating!). We've got fact sheets and tip sheets, a video to watch and so much more.

Take some time to check out these and our other cooking fire safety resources, and remember to keep fire safety top of mind today and every day. Happy holidays, everyone, and stay safe! 

Sparky coloring Page

The holidays are a time for families and friends to come together. But that also means there’s a greater risk of fire. Sparky the Fire Dog’s color-by-number activity and coloring pages help remind the kids and adults about fire safety during the holiday season.

  SPARKY MAD LIBS

Who doesn’t love a good Mad Lib, especially one from Sparky? Kids will love to fill in details about Sparky the Fire Dog’s ‘Twas the Night Before Christmas while learning important safety messages. The printout is perfect for the classroom or a take-home assignment.

HeatingtipsSpace heaters have been identified as the cause of a house fire in Columbia, South Carolina, Saturday morning in which a husband and wife died. According to The State, fire officials say that the home had multiple space heaters. The investigation continues.

The peak months for home heating fires are December, January, and February. NFPA’s safety information on heating, including the safety tips sheet, offers precautions residents can take while heating their homes.

 

Christmas trees are a festive emblem of the holiday season, but they also present a potential fire risk in the home.

Although Christmas tree fires aren’t particularly common, when they do occur, they are likely to be serious. On average, one of every 40 reported home structure Christmas tree fires resulted in a death, compared to an average of one death per 142 total reported home structure fires. One of every three home Christmas tree fires is caused by electrical problems.

In addition, Christmas trees are flammable objects. The longer they remain in the home, the more dried out they become, making them increasingly hazardous.

Fortunately, the vast majority of Christmas tree fires are preventable with some simple safety precautions. The video above demonstrates easy ways to safely enjoy a Christmas tree in your home this holiday season.

You can also visit our "Put a Freeze on Winter Fires" section, which offers a wealth of tips and recommendatinos for keeping fire-safe during this holiday season and all winter long.

SMOKEDETECT
Local volunteers from two fire departments, the local American Red Cross chapter, and the Salvation Army went door-to-door in a South Carolina community recently to make sure residence had working smoke alarms and carbon monoxide (CO) alarms. More than 100 homes were reached with donated smoke alarms.

According to News Channel WPDE-15, a majority of the homes in the Cedar Branch community didn’t have a single working smoke alarm. Families were thankful to have the 50-plus volunteers come to their homes and install the devices.

Working smoke alarms cut the risk of dying in reported home fires nearly in half. Smoke alarms should be installed in every sleeping room, outside each separate sleeping area, and on every level of the home, including the basement.

It’s important to have working CO alarms in the home on every level and outside each separate sleeping area. CO alarms are designed to alarm before potentially life-threatening levels of carbon monoxide are reached.

The NFPA website has educational materials on smoke alarm and carbon monoxide alarm safety, as well as toolkits for smoke alarm safety and carbon monoxide alarm safety the fire service can use to conduct safety awareness campaigns.

Jobs
Do you want to make a difference? NFPA's public education division is hiring for three new positions! The Public Education Regional Specialists will work remotely and be responsible for promoting the use of NFPA fire-safety education materials at the state and local level. They will serve in an ambassadorial role for the Association on a regional level by being an effective spokesperson for all NFPA public education and advocacy initiatives on behalf of NFPA, and providing an NFPA presence for fire departments in the region while coordinating field activities with Association staff. 

Job requirements include a minimum of 7 years experience in the design, implementation and evaluation of fire-safety education materials, proven public speaking experience, the ability to communicate effectively with fire safety educators and fire marshals to have a positive influence among these constituents. Travel will also be required up to 30% of the time. 

For more job requirements, a list of principle responsibilities and to apply online, please visit our careers web page

 

In his latest video series, Sparky the Fire Dog® teaches children the importance of wildfire safety. The series, which includes three videos, provides a fun, easy way parents and children can work together to help reduce the risk of wildfire damage to their homes and around their neighborhoods.

  Elves on the shelfIt appears that Santa’s elves can be troublemakers.

According to the children’s picture book, Elf on the Shelf, Santa knows who’s been good or bad because his scout elves visit children between Thanksgiving and Christmas Eve and report back to him.

In a turnabout, the Elf on the Shelf is being reported on by local fire departments. He’s posing a fire hazard. According to WBZ-TV Boston the elf’s game of hide and seek has become dangerous in some homes.

In Maryland, firefighters say he got too close to a ceiling fan and started a small fire. In Alberta, Canada, he hid too close to a light bulb and started a small fire.

Holiday decorations, including the Elf on the Shelf, can catch fire and should be kept away from heat sources. NFPA’s safety tips, including the Winter Holiday Safety, Candle Safety, Heating Safety and Christmas Tree Safety tips sheets offer more advice for staying safe throughout the holiday season, whether you’re naughty or nice.

 

  !http://nfpa.typepad.com/.a/6a00d8351b9f3453ef01b7c71e1e9b970b-800wi|border=0|src=http://nfpa.typepad.com/.a/6a00d8351b9f3453ef01b7c71e1e9b970b-800wi|alt=Close the Door Video Image|title=Close the Door Video Image|class=asset asset-image at-xid-6a00d8351b9f3453ef01b7c71e1e9b970b image-full img-responsive!

In acknowledgment of changes to the Ontario Fire Code, Barrie Fire and Emergency Services, in cooperation with Rogers TV, has created a new holiday video to thank the staff of care facilities for familiarizing themselves with their fire safety plan and conducting fire drills.


Ontario became the first province to require the retrofit of automatic sprinkler systems in what are termed “vulnerable” occupancies. These include care occupancies, care and treatment occupancies and licensed homes for older adults who may require assistance with daily living.


 

In the video, called “Close the Door,” fire safety lyrics are sung to the tune of a Christmas holiday classic, an entertaining and effective way to remind the public about escape planning. NFPA's 2014 Fire and Life Safety Educator of the Year , Samantha Hoffmann, appears in the video.


!http://i.zemanta.com/311146088_80_80.jpg|src=http://i.zemanta.com/311146088_80_80.jpg|alt=|style=margin: 0px; padding: 0px; border: 0px currentColor; width: 80px; display: block; max-width: 100%;!Put a freeze on cooking fires this winter and holiday season

“What’s the difference between ‘Put a Freeze on Winter Fires’ and ‘Project Holiday’?” That’s the question a few people have recently asked, and it’s one that’s worth clarifying, since there are some key differences between the two programs (as well as some crossover). WinterFreeze14Banner

Our “Put a Freeze on Winter Fires” campaign with USFA promotes winter fire safety directly to the public, addressing the leading causes of fires and other hazards during the colder months and holiday season. This includes home heating, cooking, holiday decorating and carbon monoxide poisoning. The campaign runs from November through March, and features regular updates on both organizations’ websites.

Project Holiday banner“Project Holiday” - a program that’s hosted each year by our Public Education division - works to communicate holiday fire safety messaging through local fire departments. It provides a wide range of resources and information for fire departments to promote holiday-related fire safety in their communities. Materials include sample news releases, media advisories, and letters to the editor. “Project Holiday” also features a parent page with suggested family activities, along with age-appropriate games and activities for kids.

What “Put a Freeze on Winter Fires” and “Project Holiday” have in common is a commitment to educating the public about simple ways to stay safe from fire this holiday season. Check out both programs to find a wealth of related tips, information and resources.

 


 


 

Campus Firewatch, which works to improve fire safety at schools and in communities, has found a creative way to talk about the importance of smoke alarms.


 

Its “[Smoke Alarms, Every House, Every Floor | https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mEZVqDGfMt4&feature=youtu.be]” video was developed using VideoScribe software, which creates whiteboard animation for visual storytelling. Through fast-paced illustrations and writing, the video explains the importance of having working smoke alarms on every floor of the home.


!http://i.zemanta.com/313542220_80_80.jpg|src=http://i.zemanta.com/313542220_80_80.jpg|alt=|style=margin: 0px; padding: 0px; border: 0px currentColor; width: 80px; display: block; max-width: 100%;!Wreath's single red light bulb reminds residents about fire hazards

!http://i.zemanta.com/310596953_80_80.jpg|src=http://i.zemanta.com/310596953_80_80.jpg|alt=|style=margin: 0px; padding: 0px; border: 0px currentColor; width: 80px; display: block; max-width: 100%;!Let NFPA held you get prepared for winter safety

 

!http://nfpa.typepad.com/.a/6a00d8351b9f3453ef01b8d0a6c59e970c-800wi|border=0|src=http://nfpa.typepad.com/.a/6a00d8351b9f3453ef01b8d0a6c59e970c-800wi|alt=Kellyransdell head shot|style=margin: 0px 0px 5px 5px;|title=Kellyransdell head shot|class=asset asset-image at-xid-6a00d8351b9f3453ef01b8d0a6c59e970c img-responsive!As a regional advisor to NFPA’s Public Education Division, I spend much of my time helping state educators develop the most educationally sound fire and life safety information they can for the public. One of the many rewarding parts of my job is when an educator finds a new approach for getting an audience enthusiastic about safety.


 

Captain Ben Hammond of the Sheridan Fire Department in Sheridan, Arkansas, has had that experience. His department conducts fire prevention assemblies throughout the year for approximately 1,400 students from grades Pre-K through 6. He told me that he recently showed "What’s That Sound?," NFPA’s fire safety video with Recess Monkey and Sparky the Fire Dog, for the first time to 200 third graders at Sheridan Intermediate School. “The results were awesome,” he said. “Watching the kids sing along and copy the moves of Recess Monkey was not only fun but satisfying. I know the message was being received.”


 

!http://nfpa.typepad.com/.a/6a00d8351b9f3453ef01bb07c1d9b0970d-320wi|src=http://nfpa.typepad.com/.a/6a00d8351b9f3453ef01bb07c1d9b0970d-320wi|alt=Kelly blog photo 12.10.14|style=margin: 0px 5px 5px 0px;|title=Kelly blog photo 12.10.14|class=asset asset-image at-xid-6a00d8351b9f3453ef01bb07c1d9b0970d img-responsive!Captain Hammond said a bonus was the response he got from Sheridan Intermediate School Principal Annette Neely. He said she didn’t know that Sparky's School House website materials are aligned to Common Core State Standards and was impressed.


As public educators we often provide messaging to groups who’ve heard it before. But as long as we have tools that help us present the message to the public creatively, we’ll have new ways to pique their curiosity, get them interested in learning more and help them make good choices when it comes to their safety.


!http://i.zemanta.com/314482741_80_80.jpg|src=http://i.zemanta.com/314482741_80_80.jpg|alt=|style=margin: 0px; padding: 0px; border: 0px currentColor; width: 80px; display: block; max-width: 100%;!NFPA is on the lookout for innovative educators

!http://i.zemanta.com/311097639_80_80.jpg|src=http://i.zemanta.com/311097639_80_80.jpg|alt=|style=margin: 0px; padding: 0px; border: 0px currentColor; width: 80px; display: block; max-width: 100%;!In November's issue of Safety Source; carbon monoxide community toolkit, tip sheets that can be customized, Thanksgiving activities & more

!http://i.zemanta.com/311146088_80_80.jpg|src=http://i.zemanta.com/311146088_80_80.jpg|alt=|style=margin: 0px; padding: 0px; border: 0px currentColor; width: 80px; display: block; max-width: 100%;!Put a freeze on cooking fires this winter and holiday season

 

!http://nfpa.typepad.com/.a/6a00d8351b9f3453ef01b8d0a51cda970c-800wi|border=0|src=http://nfpa.typepad.com/.a/6a00d8351b9f3453ef01b8d0a51cda970c-800wi|alt=My Burned Oven|title=My Burned Oven|class=asset asset-image at-xid-6a00d8351b9f3453ef01b8d0a51cda970c image-full img-responsive!


Even staff members of the Public Education Division of the National Fire Protection Association need a refresher every so often on fire safety behaviors.


I initially felt too embarrassed to share this, but because of gentle prodding from my co-worker, Karen Berard-Reed, I’m telling my story. Over the weekend, I destroyed my microwave oven. By the time I realized that flames were shooting out of the two gyros I’d put in the appliance, it was too late. Within seconds the inside of the oven was engulfed. I knew not to open the oven door. Before I could turn the oven off and reach to unplug it, the fire was out. But twisted and melted plastic rained down on the food and smoke poured out the vents. The digital timer on the oven went to black.


When I bought the gyros for my husband and me at a take-out place, I saw that each was wrapped in a paper plate. I didn’t realize that underneath the paper plates were layers of aluminum foil. I was in a rush to warm up food for our dinner. I should have inspected the gyros more closely. I shouldn’t have been rushing.


 

NFPA’s web site has safety messages about cooking and the Microwave Oven Safety tips sheet covers the topic of proper use of the appliance. It states:


    • Never use aluminum foil or metal in a microwave oven.

    • If you have a fire in the microwave oven, leave the door closed, turn the oven off and unplug it from the wall.

    • If the fire doesn’t go out, get outside and call the fire department.


My fire was out in a matter of seconds and contained to the oven. The biggest damage has been to my wallet, which is now $400 lighter thanks to the replacement oven I’m purchasing, and fees for the removal of the burned out oven and installation of the new one. I’m fairly sure I won’t make the same mistake again. I’ll think about safety each and every time I decide to warm something up.  


!http://i.zemanta.com/310596953_80_80.jpg|src=http://i.zemanta.com/310596953_80_80.jpg|alt=|style=margin: 0px; padding: 0px; border: 0px currentColor; width: 80px; display: block; max-width: 100%;!Let NFPA held you get prepared for winter safety
!http://i.zemanta.com/311403246_80_80.jpg|src=http://i.zemanta.com/311403246_80_80.jpg|alt=|style=margin: 0px; padding: 0px; border: 0px currentColor; width: 80px; display: block; max-width: 100%;!Spread the CO alarm safety message using social media
!http://i.zemanta.com/311093976_80_80.jpg|src=http://i.zemanta.com/311093976_80_80.jpg|alt=|style=margin: 0px; padding: 0px; border: 0px currentColor; width: 80px; display: block; max-width: 100%;!In November's issue of Safety Source; carbon monoxide community toolkit, tip sheets that can be customized, Thanksgiving activities & more

 

!http://nfpa.typepad.com/.a/6a00d8351b9f3453ef01b7c71a4cbf970b-550wi|src=http://nfpa.typepad.com/.a/6a00d8351b9f3453ef01b7c71a4cbf970b-550wi|alt=Winter Fires graphic 2014_15|style=width: 550px;|title=Winter Fires graphic 2014_15|class=asset asset-image at-xid-6a00d8351b9f3453ef01b7c71a4cbf970b img-responsive!
Each year, NFPA and USFA team up to remind you that the winter months are the leading time of year for home fires in our Put a Freeze on Winter Fires campaign . To help you stay safe, we provide a wealth of safety tips and information on cooking, heating, candles and holiday decorating – factors that contribute to the increased risk of home fires in the months ahead. 


 

!http://lbackstrom.typepad.com/.a/6a014e86dfab17970d01bb07bf401b970d-200wi|src=http://lbackstrom.typepad.com/.a/6a014e86dfab17970d01bb07bf401b970d-200wi|alt=Twittericon.large|style=width: 200px; margin: 0px 0px 5px 5px;|title=Twittericon.large|class=asset asset-image at-xid-6a014e86dfab17970d01bb07bf401b970d img-responsive!This Wednesday, at 2:00pm ET, NFPA and USFA will join forces with ESFI to host a Twitter chat all about winter safety. We will discuss many important winter home fire topics and the ways to stay safe, and encourage all to follow along, and even submit questions of your own!


 

Please use #WinterSafety to follow along and to submit questions to the chat. We look forward to a fun discussion with you all!</p>

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Holiday decorations are a hallmark of the season, but many of them carry potential fire hazards that can quickly turn a festive time of year into a tragic one.

As you deck your halls this holiday season, make sure to keep fire safety in mind. Home candle and decoration fires peak in December, with nearly half of all holiday decoration fires occurring because the decorations are placed too close to a heat source.

Two out of every five home decoration fires are started by candles. Christmas Eve, Christmas Day and New Year’s Day are the top three days of the year for candle fires.

Christmas trees also present a potential fire hazard in the home; one of every three home Christmas tree fires is caused by electrical problems.

Although Christmas tree fires aren’t particularly common, when they do occur, they are likely to be serious. Between 2007 and 2011, one of every 40 reported home structure Christmas tree fires resulted in a death, compared to an average of one death per 142 total reported home structure fires in that time.

Our “Put a Freeze on Winter Fires” campaign with USFA offers a host of tips and recommendations on holiday decorating, and for keeping fire-safe throughout the winter season. Make sure to check them out!

 

!http://nfpa.typepad.com/.a/6a00d8351b9f3453ef01b8d0a1b286970c-320wi|src=http://nfpa.typepad.com/.a/6a00d8351b9f3453ef01b8d0a1b286970c-320wi|alt=Winter snowstorm|style=margin: 0px 0px 5px 5px;|title=Winter snowstorm|class=asset asset-image at-xid-6a00d8351b9f3453ef01b8d0a1b286970c img-responsive!The month of November featured frequent periods of early-season arctic air and snow, which set records in many sections of the United States. Des Moines, Iowa, for instance, had ten straight days of subfreezing temperatures. Macon, Georgia, had its earliest teens on record–17 degrees–on November 19. Buffalo, New York, recorded seven feet of snow in some areas.


 

!http://nfpa.typepad.com/.a/6a00d8351b9f3453ef01b7c717a6bb970b-120wi|src=http://nfpa.typepad.com/.a/6a00d8351b9f3453ef01b7c717a6bb970b-120wi|alt=SPARKY GET READY COVER SHOT|style=margin: 0px 5px 5px 0px;|title=SPARKY GET READY COVER SHOT|class=asset asset-image at-xid-6a00d8351b9f3453ef01b7c717a6bb970b img-responsive!If history is any indication, the severe weather we’ve already had is likely a harbinger of what’s to come. NFPA’s community tool kit, Get Ready! Preparing Your Community for a Disaster, can help firefighters and first responders prepare cities and towns for harsh conditions and hazards.


The tool kit includes a presenter’s guide, PowerPoint presentation, and fact sheets on a number of topics, including, home fires, floods, and winter storms. Materials are available in English and Spanish.


!http://i.zemanta.com/310596953_80_80.jpg|src=http://i.zemanta.com/310596953_80_80.jpg|alt=|style=margin: 0px; padding: 0px; border: 0px currentColor; width: 80px; display: block; max-width: 100%;!Let NFPA held you get prepared for winter safety

In the wake of an incident in which guests at a Maine resort got sick earlier this year from carbon monoxide (CO), a proposal is heading to the legislature requiring CO alarms in all homes and hotels.


 

According to firehouse.com the president of the state firefighters’ union is working with lawmakers to bring forward a bill during this legislative session. Current Maine law says that all rental units and newly purchased homes, as well as houses, hotels, and dormitories built or renovated after August 1, !http://nfpa.typepad.com/.a/6a00d8351b9f3453ef01b8d0a242e7970c-320wi|src=http://nfpa.typepad.com/.a/6a00d8351b9f3453ef01b8d0a242e7970c-320wi|alt=Cofactheet|style=margin: 0px 5px 5px 0px;|title=Cofactheet|class=asset asset-image at-xid-6a00d8351b9f3453ef01b8d0a242e7970c img-responsive!2012, are required to have CO alarms. The bill would expand the requirement to all structures where people sleep.


In February, 21 guests at the Ogunquit Resort were sickened when CO gas leaked from a broken pipe intended to vent fumes from a propane furnace.


 

NFPA’s web page on CO alarms, the Carbon Monoxide Safety tips sheet, and the Carbon Monoxide Alarms community tool kit for the fire service provide materials to educate the public about the dangers of the odorless, colorless gas.


!http://i.zemanta.com/311403246_80_80.jpg|src=http://i.zemanta.com/311403246_80_80.jpg|alt=|style=margin: 0px; padding: 0px; border: 0px currentColor; width: 80px; display: block; max-width: 100%;!Spread the CO alarm safety message using social media

!http://i.zemanta.com/314482741_80_80.jpg|src=http://i.zemanta.com/314482741_80_80.jpg|alt=|style=margin: 0px; padding: 0px; border: 0px currentColor; width: 80px; display: block; max-width: 100%;!NFPA is on the lookout for innovative educators

!http://i.zemanta.com/308517090_80_80.jpg|src=http://i.zemanta.com/308517090_80_80.jpg|alt=|style=margin: 0px; padding: 0px; border: 0px currentColor; width: 80px; display: block; max-width: 100%;!Family has close call with carbon monoxide exposure

!http://i.zemanta.com/308517102_80_80.jpg|src=http://i.zemanta.com/308517102_80_80.jpg|alt=|style=margin: 0px; padding: 0px; border: 0px currentColor; width: 80px; display: block; max-width: 100%;!NFPA grant provides $5,000 in funding for local fire department projects

 

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Are you a fire and life safety educator who takes a lead role in making your community safer? &#0160;Do you work for a local fire department? Use NFPA materials in a creative and consistent way? Demonstrate excellence and innovation? If so, you’ll want to consider applying for the 2015 Fire and Life Safety Educator of the Year Award.


Or, if you know of an educator who you feel should be considered for the award, you can put that person’s name in nomination.


 

The winning educator will receive a $1,000 honorarium, travel to Chicago in June for an award presentation at the general session of the NFPA Conference and $1,000 donated to the educator’s local fire department to support public education activities.The application deadline is February 20, 2015.


!http://i.zemanta.com/308517102_80_80.jpg|src=http://i.zemanta.com/308517102_80_80.jpg|alt=|style=margin: 0px; padding: 0px; border: 0px currentColor; width: 80px; display: block; max-width: 100%;!NFPA grant provides $5,000 in funding for local fire department projects

!http://i.zemanta.com/311146088_80_80.jpg|src=http://i.zemanta.com/311146088_80_80.jpg|alt=|style=margin: 0px; padding: 0px; border: 0px currentColor; width: 80px; display: block; max-width: 100%;!Put a freeze on cooking fires this winter and holiday season

It's amazing how fast the holidays come and go, don't you think? I liken the season to a fast moving train, with many moving parts and lots and lots of shopping! With Thanksgiving now in the rear-view mirror, we get to look forward to Hanukkah and Christmas. But as we've mentioned before, it's important to keep in mind certain dangers holiday celebrations can bring, if we're not careful. Remember that fast moving train I just talked about?

NFPA and the USFA have teamed up again this season for its "Put a Freeze on Winter Fires" campaign to share its best fire and life safety information with you this season. We get it; we're all busy, rushing to and fro, so we suggest, take a moment, catch your breath, and take some time to really consider safety as part of your holiday and all-around winter routine. Candles 2

This week, the emphasis is on holiday decorations. NFPA and USFA have some great tips and resources you can use as you deck the halls and prepare your home for guests. For instance, we all love the look and smell of candles, as well as how they make us feel. But this year, let's consider the alternative: battery-operated flameless candles. I know, you probably think they don't offer the same kind of ambiance you find with real candles but I have to say, they really are great! Flameless candles have come a long way these days ... they smell like real candles, come in all shapes and sizes and colors, and the "flame" flickers just like a real flame would, too. And as we're all trying to save a few dollars here and there, consider flameless candles as a way to keep your budget on track. Flameless candles can be reused each year, saving you lots of money and time! You should definitely try them out! 

Find out more about candle safety, watch our short video and download our tips sheet to review and share with family and friends. 

And remember, as you continue your shopping and decorating, add one extra item to your list: flameless candles. Enjoy this holiday season knowing you've taken one step further to ensuring you and your family stay safe this holiday season and all winter long!

 

!http://nfpa.typepad.com/.a/6a00d8351b9f3453ef01bb07b9a9c8970d-320wi|src=http://nfpa.typepad.com/.a/6a00d8351b9f3453ef01bb07b9a9c8970d-320wi|alt=Keep the Wreath Green|style=margin: 0px 5px 5px 0px;|title=Keep the Wreath Green|class=asset asset-image at-xid-6a00d8351b9f3453ef01bb07b9a9c8970d img-responsive!Fire officials in Wausau, Wisconsin, have begun their annual “Keep the Wreath Green” campaign to raise fire safety awareness during the holiday season.


The wreath, which firefighters placed in front of the Grand Avenue fire station on Thanksgiving Day, is decorated with green bulbs that are changed to red with each fire.


 

This year marked the first time the department remembered having a house fire on the first day of the campaign. The Wausau Daily Herald reports that a family escaped when the mother woke up to smoke. The home was a total loss.


 

As part of the campaign fire officials are reminding the public about proper cleaning of chimneys, space heater safety, checking smoke alarms, and electrical safety. The wreath will remain on display until New Year’s Day.


!http://i.zemanta.com/307824776_80_80.jpg|src=http://i.zemanta.com/307824776_80_80.jpg|alt=|style=margin: 0px; padding: 0px; border: 0px currentColor; width: 80px; display: block; max-width: 100%;!Sprinklers keep weekend fire from spreading

!http://i.zemanta.com/307808737_80_80.jpg|src=http://i.zemanta.com/307808737_80_80.jpg|alt=|style=margin: 0px; padding: 0px; border: 0px currentColor; width: 80px; display: block; max-width: 100%;!Cooking fires top list of Consumer Reports safety concerns during the holidays

!http://i.zemanta.com/310596953_80_80.jpg|src=http://i.zemanta.com/310596953_80_80.jpg|alt=|style=margin: 0px; padding: 0px; border: 0px currentColor; width: 80px; display: block; max-width: 100%;!Let NFPA held you get prepared for winter safety

UN
As you've come to learn, NFPA's Safety Source blog is a great resource to get important information about cooking fire safety. Whether it's safety tips or stories, statistics or reports, NFPA provides a real-world view of the challenges we all face, and ways we can help each other create a more safer environment, free from fire, for ourselves and our families.

This week, I read a press release that came out of the UN News Centre. Fire safety in the kitchen is a huge problem around the world, as we know, but as this news from the UN reminds us, cooking safety can and does go beyond the typical kitchen scenario that we all picture. The release provides a really unique snapshot of a "kitchen" safety problem we may not even be aware of, but plays a huge role in daily life in parts of the world less known to those of us here in the U.S. And I just had to share ...

According to the release, the UN held its first-ever Cookstoves Future Summit, hosted by the Global Alliance on Clean Cookstoves, November 20-21 in New York City. At the Summit, which brought together more than 65 ministers, CEO's and directors from around the world, the UN World Food Programme pledged to help 10 million people safely prepare and consume the food it provides by 2020. 

The agenda focused on helping to define solutions aimed at improving the health of women living in poverty in areas such as Kenya, Ethiopia, Haiti, Kenya, and who lack the necessary goods and services they need to create a safer cooking environment. For example, they are looking at ways to introduce fuel-efficient stoves and clean cookstoves that  ensures these women can properly cook food without jeopardizing the environment, or their personal safety.

According to the UN, every year, houshold air pollution from cooking kills over four million people and sickens millions more. The World Health Organization (WHO) says nearly three billion people worldwide continue to rely on solid fuels to cook, causing serious environmental and health impacts.

During this time of thanksgiving, it's important remember why we practice safe cooking. And OK, we may not be as big as the United Nations, and as individuals we may not have as lofty a goal of helping 10 million people prepare food more safely, but as family members, we should try to do our very best in helping keep our own kitchens as safe as possible for ourselves and for those we love.

Over the next few weeks as you prepare your holiday meals and gather with friends and family, take the time to review some basic cooking fire safety tips and make those smart choices, even when you feel pressed for time or distracted by the merriment in the next room. Your due dilligence can and will make all the difference.

You can find all of this information on NFPA's cooking fire safety central web page. And I always say, this information is available to download so please share it with friends and other family members. Enjoy the holidays, everyone, and please be safe!

 

!http://nfpa.typepad.com/.a/6a00d8351b9f3453ef01bb07b4eb22970d-800wi|border=0|src=http://nfpa.typepad.com/.a/6a00d8351b9f3453ef01bb07b4eb22970d-800wi|alt=Savannah 9 volt battery safety|title=Savannah 9 volt battery safety|class=asset asset-image at-xid-6a00d8351b9f3453ef01bb07b4eb22970d image-full img-responsive!


When my husband and I adopted our kitten, Savannah, in the spring, we had no idea how exhausting she would be. In her world, playtime begins the moment we get home from work and doesn’t end until “lights out.” You can imagine what it’s like in our household on weekends.


To fight off pet burnout, we’ve invested in what are called energetic cat workout toys. These battery-powered mechanical devices have Savannah leaping through the air at a moving target, pouncing on rotating laser beams, and lunging at dashing and darting toy birds of prey, instead of climbing out of our second-story window, as she’s fond of attempting to do. Her toys use batteries; some require the 9-volt type. Needless to say we keep a supply on hand just in case one of those workout toys runs out of juice.


Because 9-volt batteries can be a fire hazard, I keep them in their original packaging until I’m ready to use them. I almost never have to use all of the batteries in Savannah’s toys at the same time so I put the leftovers in a place where they won’t get tossed around. I also store them upright.


 

NFPA’s 9-volt Battery Safety Tips sheet includes more information on using, storing, and disposing of 9-volt batteries safely.


!http://i.zemanta.com/307808737_80_80.jpg|src=http://i.zemanta.com/307808737_80_80.jpg|alt=|style=margin: 0px; padding: 0px; border: 0px currentColor; width: 80px; display: block; max-width: 100%;!Cooking fires top list of Consumer Reports safety concerns during the holidays

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