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Educational Messaging

The Educational Messages Advisory Committee (EMAC) meets periodically to review NFPA’s fire and burn safety education messages and to provide recommendations to NFPA public education staff for updating and revising the messages. 

The EMAC public education messages are used throughout NFPA’s educational programs, curricula, and handouts, and provide fire and life safety educators with accurate and consistent language for use when offering safety information to the public. Each topic area is self-contained, written so that all the information needed on a certain subject is provided within that category. As a result, some messaging may be repeated throughout topic areas. 

Updated educational messaging around sleeping with a door closed

In 2016, NFPA’s Educational Messages Advisory Committee modified its message around sleeping with a door closed (PDF, 128 KB) as follows: “A closed door may slow the spread of smoke, heat and fire. Install smoke alarms in every sleeping room and outside each separate sleeping area. For the best protection, make sure all smoke alarms are interconnected.” 

The message has been modified in NFPA's escape planning and smoke alarm information, and on safety tip sheets. The Committee also recommended the need for additional research to look at other factors such as whether or not a closed door could delay early warning from a smoke alarm outside the sleeping room and how a closed door will impact the rate of fatalities when the fire begins in the room where the door is closed. 

Educational Messages Advisory Committee members

Educational Messages Advisory Committee

  • Brett Brenner, Electrical Safety Foundation International
  • Kate Carr, Safe Kids Worldwide
  • Gary Carter, Bessemer, AL, Fire Department
  • Kwame Cooper, LA City Fire Department
  • Patty Davis, U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission
  • Ernest Grant, North Carolina Jaycee Burn Center
  • Larry Gray, Cleveland Fire Department
  • Jorge Mederos, Ft. Lauderdale Fire/Rescue Dept.
  • Patricia Mieszala, Burn Concerns
  • Teresa Neal, U.S. Fire Administration
  • Maria Pelchar, Holyoke Fire Department
  • Nancy Trench, Oklahoma State University
  • NFPA staff: Marty Ahrens, Karen Berard-Reed, Lisa Braxton, Judy Comoletti, April Hart, Amy LeBeau, Tom McGowan