Safety First: Escaping a fire

News 12 spoke with fire officials about how to safely escape a fire.

The New York City Fire Department recommends the three P's of action; plan, practice and prevention. Lt. Anthony Mancuso says it is essentially the way to save your life if and when a fire occurs in your home.

The first step is to map out a plan, which includes knowing where all the safety exits are located and how to escape from your home. Most buildings in the borough have fire escapes, and the lieutenant says you should know how they work and where they lead to.

Residents should also draw and map out a floor plan of their home to discuss all the proper escape routes. Fire officials say that if there is a fire in your apartment, regardless of construction, it is important to get everyone out, stay low, close all doors and never use the elevator.

They say that if you live in a non-fire proof building, it is usually safe to leave the building. If you live in a fireproof building, stay inside, keep your doors closed and seal them with duct tape or wet sheets and towels. Then wait for firefighters to arrive.

Fire officials say the most important part of escaping a fire is paying attention to smoke alarms. As stated in a PSA recently released by the fire department, they are designed to detect and warn of the silent but deadly smoke which may be in the air.

One way in which the department promotes safety in the community is by using trailers called "smoke houses." Their purpose is to give real life simulation of what it's like to be in a fire. When it's on, the whole trailer is filled with smoke. The fire department encourages people to get down on the ground during the simulation and use the right-hand crawling method in order to escape to safety.

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