Fire Safety Checklist
Following is a fire safety checklist which is intended to help you make your home fire safe.
Inside Your Home and Garage
___Keep a working fire extinguisher in the kitchen.
___Maintain electric and gas stoves in good operating condition.
___Keep baking soda on hand to extinguish stove-top oil fires.
___Tum the handles of pots and pans containing hot liquids away from the front of the stove.
___Install curtains and towel holders away from the burners on the stove.
___Store matches and lighters out of the reach of children.
___Make sure that your electrical service is designed to handle appliance loads.
___Install a screen in front of fireplace or wood stove.
___Store the ashes from your fireplace (or barbeque) in a metal container and dispose of only when cold.
___Clean fireplace chimneys and flues at least once a year.
___Install smoke detectors between living and sleeping areas.
___Test smoke detectors monthly and replace batteries twice a year, when clocks are changed in the spring and fall.
___Install child safety plugs (caps) on all electrical outlets.
___Replace electrical cords that do not work properly, have loose connections, or if frayed.
___If you sleep with the door closed, install a smoke detector in the bedroom.
___Turn off electric blankets and other electrical appliances when not in use.
___Do not smoke in bed.
___If you have security bars on your windows or doors, be sure they have an approved quick-release mechanism so you and your family can get out in the event of a fire.
___Disconnect appliances such as curling irons and hair dryers when done; store in a safe location until cool.
___Keep items such as towels away from wall and floor heaters.
___Mount a working fire extinguisher in the garage.
___Have tools such as a shovel, hoe, rake, and bucket available for use in a wildfire emergency.
___Install a solid door with self-closing hinges between living areas and the garage.
___Dispose of oily rags in approved (Underwriters Laboratories) metal containers.
___Store all combustibles away from ignition sources such as water heaters.
___Disconnect electrical tools and appliances when not in use.
___Allow hot tools such as glue guns and soldering irons to cool before storing.
___Properly store flammable liquids in approved containers and away from ignition sources such as pilot lights.
___Maintain at least a three-day supply of drinking water, and food that does not require refrigeration and generally does not need cooking.
___Maintain a portable radio, flashlight, emergency cooking equipment, portable lanterns and batteries.
___Maintain first aid supplies to treat the injured until help arrives.
___Keep a list of valuables to take with you in an emergency; if possible, store these valuables together.
___Make sure that all family members are ready to protect themselves with STOP, DROP and ROLL.
___For safety, securely attach all water heaters and furniture such as cabinets and bookshelves to walls.
___Have a contingency plan to enable family members to contact each other. Establish a family / friend phone tree.
___Designate an emergency meeting place outside your home.
___Practice emergency exit drills in the house regularly.
___Outdoor cooking appliances such as barbeques should never be taken indoors for use as heaters.
___Consider installing residential sprinklers.
___Build your home away from ridge tops, canyons and areas between high points on a ridge.
___Build your home at least 30 - 100 feet from your property line.
___Use fire resistant materials.
___Enclose the underside of eaves, balconies and above ground decks with fire resistant materials.
___Try to limit the size and number of windows in your home that face large areas of vegetation stall only dual-paned or triple-paned windows.
___Make sure that electric service lines, fuse boxes and circuit breaker panels are installed and maintained as prescribed by code.
___Contact qualified individuals to perform electrical maintenance and repairs.
___Identify at least two exit routes from your neighborhood.
___Construct roads that allow two-way traffic.
___Design road width, grade and curves to allow access for large emergency vehicles.
___Construct driveways to allow large emergency equipment to reach your house.
___Design bridges to carry heavy emergency vehicles, including bulldozers carried on large trucks.
___Post clear road signs to show traffic restrictions such as dead-end roads, and weight and height limitations.
___Make sure dead-end roads, and long driveways have turn-around areas wide enough for emergency vehicles.
___Construct turnouts along one-way roads.
___Clear flammable vegetation at least 10 feet from roads and five feet from driveways.
___Cut back overhanging tree branches above roads.
___Make sure that your street is named or numbered, and a sign is visibly posted at each street intersection.
___Make sure that your street name and house number are not duplicated elsewhere in the county.
___Post your houses address at the beginning of your driveway, or on your house if it is easily visible from the road.
___Remove branches within 10 feet of your chimney and dead branches overhanging your roof.
___Remove dead leaves and needles from your roof and gutters.
___Install a fire resistant roof. Contact your local fire department for current roofing requirements.
___Cover your chimney outlet and stovepipe with a nonflammable screen of half inch or smaller mesh.
___Create a "defensible space" by removing all flammable vegetation at least 30 feet from all structures.
___Never prune near power lines. Call your local utility company first.
___Landscape with fire resistant plants.
___On slopes or in high fire hazard areas remove flammable vegetation out to 100 feet or more.
___Space native trees and shrubs at least 10 feet apart.
___For trees taller than 18 feet, remove lower branches within six feet of the ground.
___Maintain all plants by regularly watering, and by removing dead branches, leaves and needles.
___Before planting trees close to any power line, contact your local utility company to confirm the maximum tree height allowable for that location.
___Stack woodpiles at least 30 feet from all structures and remove vegetation within 10 feet of woodpiles.
___Locate LPG tanks (butane and propane) at least 30 feet from any structure and maintain 10 feet of clearance.
___Remove all stacks of construction materials, pine needles, leaves and other debris from your yard.
___Contact your local fire department to see if open burning is allowed in your area; if so, obtain a burning permit.
___Where burn barrels are allowed, clear flammable materials at least 10 feet around the barrel; cover the open top with non-flammable screen mesh no larger than a quarter inch.
Emergency Water Supply
Maintain an emergency water supply that meets fire department standards through one of the following:
- A community water I hydrant system
- A cooperative emergency storage tank with neighbors
- A minimum storage supply of 2,500 gallons on your property
___Clearly mark all emergency water sources.
___Create easy firefighter access to your closest emergency water source.
___If your water comes from a well, consider an emergency generator to operate the pump during a power failure.
This fire safety checklist was developed by the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection.