October is Fire Prevention Month and seems to be a good time to think about how well you and your family are prepared to prevent and respond to a fire in your home. A recent study revealed that 97 percent of households have installed smoke alarms, but home fires continue to be the third leading cause of unintentional home injury-related deaths. Further, the study indicated that although the majority of Americans report having smoke alarms installed within their homes, only 20 percent test their smoke alarms on a regular basis. Research shows that more than half of American families (64%) polled have never planned or practiced a fire escape plan.

Fire in the home can be a devastating event. It can result in the loss of your home and possibly the loss of your life. Take the time to inspect your home for fire hazards, and correct them. Install smoke detectors, and test and maintain them regularly. Develop and practice an escape plan. These are steps that put you and your family on the path to your personal safety and well-being. Visit the Safety Resources section ofwww.asa.netto read more about installing and testing smoke alarms, creating and practicing a fire escape plan and tips on fire prevention. You will also find Toolbox Talks on fire extinguisher use and fire safety tips.