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How to plot your escape

Wednesday, 2nd July, 2008

Locals are being urged to practice their escape - from a house fire.

Broken Hill Station Officer Glen Whitehead said while people were getting the message about smoke alarms, the number of households that did not have an escape plan was too high.

"A smoke alarm will provide you and your family with the vital minutes and seconds you need to escape a house fire, but a home escape plan ensures that everyone knows how to evacuate safely," he said.

"We find that people who practice their escape plan are often surprised at how long it takes them or the obstacles or delays to making a quick escape.

"Then we ask them to imagine it is dark or when the rooms are filled with smoke."

SO Whitehead said that an easy way to design an escape plan was to draw the rooms of the home on a grid and then plot the escape routes.

"It is important to identify two exits from each room where possible and a place to meet once everyone has evacuated safely.

"If you have a family member who is elderly, or has a disability, you must take into consideration mobility issues or medical conditions that might make it more difficult for that person to escape and factor this into the escape plan," SO Whitehead said.

He also reminded people to ensure that doors and windows could be opened easily in the event of a fire, without compromising the security of their homes.

"If you have deadlocks on your doors or windows, make sure you keep the keys in the locks or nearby so that in case you access them quickly if you need to."

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