Monday, September 26, 2011

It’s Fire Prevention Week. Protect your Family from Fire! Orland Fire Protection District Encourages Residents to Keep their Homes Safe During Fire Prevention Week, October 9-15, 2011

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For more information, contact:
Nancy Mulvihill/Public Educator

It’s Fire Prevention Week. Protect your Family from Fire!  
Orland Fire Protection District Encourages Residents to Keep their Homes Safe
During Fire Prevention Week, October 9-15, 2011

October 8, 2011 -- What’s the best way to protect your family from fire? Be ahead of the game, of course. With more than 360,000 home fires reported in the United States in 2009, according to the nonprofit National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), your best defense is a good offense. That’s why the Orland Fire Protection District is teaming up with NFPA during the October 9-15, 2011, to let our community know: “It’s Fire Prevention Week. Protect your Family from Fire!” This year’s campaign focuses on preventing the leading causes of home fires -- cooking, heating and electrical equipment, as well as candles and smoking materials. Additionally, it urges people to protect their homes and families with life-saving technology and planning.

“In 2009, 2,565 people died in home fires. Nearly all of these deaths could have been prevented by taking a few simple precautions like having working smoke alarms and a home fire escape plan, keeping things that can burn away from the stove and always turning off space heaters before going to bed,” says Acting Chief Raymond Kay of the Orland Fire Protection District. “Fire is a dangerous opponent, but by anticipating the hazards, you are much less likely to be one of the nearly 13,000 people injured in home fires each year.”

The Orland Fire Protection District offers the following tips for protecting your home and family from fire:
  • Stay in the kitchen while you are frying, grilling, or broiling food. If you leave the kitchen for even a short period of time, turn off the stove.
  • Keep anything that can burn at least three feet away from heating equipment, like the furnace, fireplace, wood stove, or portable space heater.
  • Have a three-foot “kid-free zone” around open fires and space heaters.
  • Replace or repair damaged or loose electrical cords.
  • If you smoke, smoke outside.
  • Use deep, wide ashtrays on a sturdy table.
  • Blow out all candles when you leave the room or go to bed. Avoid the use of candles in the bedroom and other areas where people may fall asleep.
“While preventing home fires in the Orland Fire District is always our number one priority, it is not always possible,” Acting Chief Kay continued. Orland Park and Orland Hills residents need to provide the best protection to keep their homes and families safe in the event of a fire. This can be achieved by developing an escape plan which you practice regularly and equipping homes with life-saving technologies like smoke alarms and home fire sprinklers.”

The following tips will help keep your family safe if there is a fire in your home:
  • Install smoke alarms inside each bedroom, outside each sleeping area, and on every level of the home (including the basement).
  • Interconnect all smoke alarms in the home so when one sounds, they all sound.
  • Test smoke alarms at least monthly and replace all smoke alarms when they are 10 years old or sooner if they do not respond when tested.
  • Make sure everyone in your home knows how to respond if the smoke alarm sounds.
  • Pull together everyone in your household and make a plan. Walk through your home and inspect all possible ways out.  Households with children should consider drawing a floor plan of your home, marking two ways out of each room, including windows and doors.
  • If you are building or remodeling your home, consider installing home fire sprinklers.
The Orland Fire Protection District will be hosting an Open House on October 8th during Fire Prevention Week to promote “It’s Fire Prevention Week. Protect your Family from Fire!” Through these educational, family-oriented activities, residents can learn more about the power of prevention and available technologies to protect their own families from fire.  Also, during our open house we will be celebrating Sparky’s 60th Birthday, all kids that bring in a blanket or dog food to be donated to an animal shelter will get their picture taken with Sparky. (Pictures will be emailed to the family).  Stop by for “Touch a Truck” and see all the Fire District’s Equipment including the Dive Squad.  We will also be doing auto extrication and a live fire/sprinkler demonstration.

Also this year we will be hosting our Annual Coloring Contest Awards Ceremony at 12:30 p.m. All finalists will be on display for everyone to see.

To find out more about Fire Prevention Week programs and activities in the Orland Fire Protection District, please contact Nancy Mulvihill at 708-873-2742 or visit our website at:  for more information about the Open House or any other event going on in the community. To learn more about “It’s Fire Prevention Week. Protect your Family from Fire!” visit NFPA’s Web site at