Create a home escape plan
Develop and practice a home fire escape plan using NFPA's home escape plan grid (PDF, 1.1 MB).

Safety Tip

  • Know two ways out of every room.
  • Use emergency release devices inside all barred doors and windows. Emergency release devices enable you to push the bars open from the inside, but they don't affect the security provided outside. These devices can involve pulling a lever, pushing a button, stepping on a pedal or kicking in a lever on the floor. Make sure everyone in the household knows how to operate the release devices.
  • Have working smoke alarms and test them monthly.
  • While practicing your home fire escape plan, make sure that everyone in the household can operate the quick release mechanisms. If young children, older adults, or people with disabilities need extra help with the devices, designate a member of the household to help them, and decide on backups in case the designated person isn't home.

The fear of crime drives many people to install security bars and other devices on their windows and doors to prevent intruders from entering their homes. These actions are often taken without consideration of fire safety and as a result, many serious incidents have occurred where people have been trapped and died in fires.

NFPA has created free educational materials with specific safety messages about home security and fire safety developed to assist you in organizing a safety program in your community.

Featured Product
Emergency Response: Life Safety and Evacuation Video
Teach safety and security staff how to plan for and conduct a safe evacuation!
Item #: VC79