Monday, November 19, 2018
Thanksgiving Week Safety Advice from PGFD
MEDIA CONTACT: Mark E. Brady, Chief Public Information Officer
240-508-7930 firstname.lastname@example.org @PGFDPIO
The Prince George’s County Fire/Emergency Medical Services (EMS) Department offers the following safety tips, to help ensure all citizens, residents and visitors will enjoy a safe and festive Thanksgiving holiday. Unfortunately, fire safety and injury prevention guidelines are often overlooked during the holidays. Prince George's County Fire Chief Benjamin M. Barksdale stated, "Everyone needs to keep Safety First and by doing so our citizens, visitors and businesses can avoid tragedy and disruption of their holiday festivities."
The Federal Emergency Management Agency's (FEMA) United States Fire Administration (USFA) issued a special report examining the characteristics of Thanksgiving Day fires in residential buildings. The report, Thanksgiving Day Fires in Residential Buildings, was developed by USFA's National Fire Data Center.
The report is based on 2011 to 2013 data from the National Fire Incident Reporting System (NFIRS). For each year, an estimated 2,100 residential building fires were reported to fire departments in the U.S. on Thanksgiving Day and caused an estimated 10 deaths, 50 injuries and $28 million in property loss. The leading cause of Thanksgiving Day fires in residential buildings is, by far, cooking. Additionally, smoke alarms were not present in 20 percent of Thanksgiving Day fires that occurred in occupied residential buildings.
If your Thanksgiving plans include a Turkey Fryer, this is another whole story by itself, click here for Turkey Fryer Safety Tips from 2015.
These safety tips work for every day of the year, however, home fires increase dramatically, twice as many, on Thanksgiving Day. While these safety and cooking tips may not make Thanksgiving dinner taste any better--they will help to avoid potential disaster;
• Overnight guests should be instructed on your exit drill from the home and designated meeting place for your family. Sleep with bedroom doors closed (see video below).
• Keep Thanksgiving decorations and kitchen clutter away from sources of direct heat.
- Test smoke alarms on the Safety First Day of every month.
Working 10-year smoke alarms are required in all residences in Prince George's County. Working carbon monoxide detectors are also required on every level of your home if you use a fuel for cooking and/or heat, have a fireplace and/or an attached garage.
If you can not afford to purchase a 10-year smoke alarm you should call 311. A firefighter will install a working smoke alarm in your home; free of charge.
The men and women; volunteer, civilian and paid, of the Prince George's County Fire/EMS Department wish everyone a Happy and Safe Thanksgiving!!!