Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Safe House

The Fireproof House
Your home should be a place of safety, protection, and refuge.  Inside a locked home we feel secure from the outside world or criminals, danger, and inclement weather. What about attacks from inside the home? Annually, 2,135 people die and 8,550 are injured in 248,500 residential fires (totalling $5.9 billion in property loss).]

In 1907 architect, Frank Lloyd Wright, published the article "A Fireproof House for $5,000", in Ladies Home Journal.  In this model he advocated for concrete construction, as opposed to the standard wood frame, or lathe and plaster common at the time. 

Now, in the 21st century, with the technological advancement in fire protection and detection systems, we have even more tools to employ in creating the "fire proof house".  Among these tools are smoke alarms,home fire sprinkler systems, and ready access to fire extinguishers.

Smoke alarms should be installed on every level of the home, inside and outside of each bedroom/sleeping area.  Smoke alarms should be tested monthly, and batteries replaced at least two times per year.  Home fire sprinkler systems are rapidly growing in popularity, and cost per foot is relatively cheap (especially when installed in new home construction).  The Home Fire Sprinkler Coalition, offers a wealth of information, and free resources.  Fire extinguishers can be easily, and cost effectively, obtained from your nearest hardware store.  These should be installed in the areas of greatest fire risk, typically, the kitchen, and garage areas.