Be Prepared for Home Fires


You and your family can prevent and prepare for a home fire with two simple steps:

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Step 1

Practice fire drills at home.

Use this Home Fire Escape Plan worksheet to plan your evacuation and practice it at least twice a year as a family.

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Step 2

Test your smoke alarms monthly.

Make sure you and your family are alerted as soon as a fire is detected. If the smoke alarm isn't working, change the batteries.

The Red Cross Responds to a Home Fire or Other Disaster Every 8 Minutes

That is why we launched the Home Fire Campaign, which aims to reduce the number of fire-related deaths and injuries by 25 percent by 2020. To date in North Dakota we have:

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Visited 25 cities and towns in our region

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Reached 500 youth with preparedness information

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Conducted 2,000 in-home visits.

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Created 1,200 evacuation plans.

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Replaced 750 smoke alarm batteries.

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Installed more than 3,700 smoke alarms

volunteers installing free smoke alarms

When South Dakota news reporter London Swan was called to cover a local home fire, she had no idea that she would arrive at her apartment building. With only the clothes on her back, her purse and her car, London watched flames emerge from the roof. Almost immediately, the Red Cross was on the scene to provide food to London and her neighbors and help them find a safe place to stay that night. The next morning, Red Cross caseworkers met with London to assist with her recovery. Since experiencing the fire, London says it’s critical to have a disaster plan. “I think being prepared is something everyone needs to do because I never thought this would happen to me but it did,” she said.

volunteers installing free smoke alarms

The Dakotas Region is hosting fire safety events throughout the year to help families prepare for and prevent home fires. We need volunteers to help install smoke alarms, complete fire safety checklists and create fire escape plans with local families.

Sign up for one of these events by contacting Disaster Program Managers:

  • Tom Tezel (Eastern North Dakota, Northwest Minnesota)
  • Rob Stotz (Western North Dakota)
  • Stay tuned For Upcoming Dates & Places for Home Fire Canvassing Events.

A gift of any size supports all of the urgent humanitarian needs of the American Red Cross. For more information visit