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!|src=|alt=Mother's Day at Messiah|style=margin: 0px 0px 5px 5px;|title=Mother's Day at Messiah|class=asset asset-image at-xid-6a00d8351b9f3453ef01a511b6a076970c img-responsive!Every Mother’s Day Messiah Baptist Church in Bridgeport, Connecticut, where I grew up, hosts a breakfast in Fellowship Hall in honor of the mothers and all the women of the church. The men of Messiah roll up their sleeves and spend hours in the church’s industrial-style kitchen preparing a feast for more than 100. I attended on Sunday with my mother and an aunt–my father set tables and poured coffee–and enjoyed the plate of fish cakes, buttermilk biscuits, sausage links, and scrambled eggs set before me.


Later, on my way across the room to the kitchen to ask my father to refresh our coffee, I noticed a sign posted in bold letters next to the double doors that led to the church’s back parking lot–the Fire Escape Plan, letting us know what to do if we had to get out. NFPA’s escape planning information, how-to guide for making an escape plan, cooking safety information, and tips sheets on safety in places of public assembly, and escape planning are tools to help us be prepared for an emergency whether we are assembled in small or large numbers.

The hard work the men put in for Mother’s Day breakfast will have its reward. The roles will be reversed on Father’s Day. It’s comforting to know that all participants will be able to refer to the posted escape plan if necessary.

!|src=|alt=|style=margin: 0px; padding: 0px; border: 0px currentColor; width: 80px; display: block; max-width: 100%;!NFPA offers new video on safety in places of public assembly

Between two serious home fires that occurred over the past few days, smoke alarms saved the lives of 8 people.

In Tampa, FL, smoke alarms alerted a family of seven to a fire that broke out in their home overnight. While all members – one adult and six children - were able to escape safely, the house was engulfed in flames when firefighters arrived at the scene.

“ …no price can be put on the lives of the seven people who escaped unscathed,” said Tampa Fire Marshal Milton Jenkins. “This is a testament to the value and necessity of smoke alarms being installed in residential homes.”

In Mono, ON, a man awoke to the sound of smoke alarms and safely escaped his home, which burned to the ground in the hours that followed.House fire

“The homeowner actually woke up to the smoke alarm and had to go out his bedroom window,” said Rosemont Fire Lieutenant Daniel Hawkins. “He was on the main floor, heard the smoke detector and left. That just goes to show smoke detectors save lives.”

For more information about properly installing and maintaining smoke alarms, check out NFPA's smoke alarm safety tips sheet.

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

  • NFPA launches new Learn Not to Burn Preschool Program: The program's behaviors and strategies are guided by research related to fire safety messaging and young children, including using positively framed messages, opportunities for active engagement and encouragement of family involvement.  
  • Updated smoke alarm tip sheet reaches wider audiences
  • May is Electrical Safety Month
  • Mother's Day e-card and activities
  • Fire service online quiz
  • NFPA Journal's Haunted by fire 

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