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Red Cross Responds to 5 Home Fires in 4 Days in Denver-Metro Area
The Red Cross responds to a home fire on average about once every 9 seconds in the U.S.
The Red Cross Mile High Chapter responded to five separate home fires over the cold weekend from Friday through this morning, helping two dozen people with needs like shelter, food, blankets, coats and infant supplies.
At 11:43 p.m. on Friday, Feb. 22, volunteers responded to a single-family home fire on South Nome Way in Aurora that displaced two adults and two kids. Red Cross provided lodging, blankets and comfort kits.
At 2 p.m. on Saturday, Feb. 23, volunteers responded to a multi-unit apartment fire on Nome Street in Aurora that displaced residents of four units. Red Cross provided assistance to two of the units (4 adults & 2 children); the others did not require assistance. We provided lodging, clothing & shoes, seasonal garments, comfort kits and blankets.
At 10:20 a.m. on Sunday, Feb. 24, the Red Cross responded via phone to a disaster on Fontaine Street in Federal Heights. This single family fire displaced one adult and a 4-year-old child. They were staying with friends during the snow storm and Red Cross workers followed up to determine what other needs they may have, such as food, clothing, etc.
At 11:41 a.m. on Sunday, Feb. 24, volunteers responded to a single-family fire on East Severn Place in Denver that displaced 1 adult and 3 children. Red Cross provided lodging, groceries, clothing & infant supplies. We collaborated with Denver Police Victim’s Advocates to provide transportation.
At 9 a.m. today, we responded to a disaster on Court Place in Denver. This single-family fire displaced 8 people who were able to salvage some of their belongings but have no place to live temporarily. Red Cross provided lodging and groceries along with comfort kits and disaster recovery information
The sudden spike in home fires is not entirely unusual; the Red Cross responds to a home fire on average about once every 9 seconds in the U.S. and responds to an average of about one home fire a day throughout Colorado -- and home fires increase in frequency during cold weather. However, the Red Cross would like to remind the public to take precautions to help prevent home fires and practice life-saving steps to respond to them:
The most effective way to protect yourself and your home from fire is to identify and remove fire hazards. Sixty-five percent of home fire deaths occur in homes with no working smoke alarms. During a home fire, working smoke alarms and a fire escape plan that has been practiced regularly can save lives.
Keep items that can catch on fire at least three feet away from anything that gets hot, such as space heaters.
Never smoke in bed.
Talk to children regularly about the dangers of fire, matches and lighters and keep them out of reach.
Turn portable heaters off when you leave the room or go to sleep.
Stay in the kitchen when frying, grilling or broiling food. If you leave the kitchen for even a short period of time, turn off the stove.
Stay in the home while simmering, baking, roasting or boiling food. Check it regularly and use a timer to remind you that food is cooking.
Keep anything that can catch fire—like pot holders, towels, plastic and clothing— away from the stove.
Keep pets off cooking surfaces and countertops to prevent them from knocking things onto the burner.
Never use a generator, grill, camp stove or other gasoline, propane, natural gas or charcoal-burning devices inside a home, garage, basement, crawlspace or any partially enclosed area.
Replace batteries in smoke alarms at least once a year. Immediately install a new battery if an alarm chirps, warning the battery is low.
Smoke alarms should be replaced every 10 years. Never disable smoke or carbon monoxide alarms.
Ensure that all household members know two ways to escape from every room of your home.
Make sure everyone knows where to meet outside in case of fire.
Practice escaping from your home at least twice a year and at different times of the day. Practice waking up to smoke alarms, low crawling and meeting outside. Make sure everyone knows how to call 9-1-1.
Teach household members to STOP, DROP and ROLL if their clothes should catch on fire.
About the American Red Cross:
The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies about 40 percent of the nation's blood; teaches skills that save lives; provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a not-for-profit organization that depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. For more information, please visit redcross.org or join our blog at http://blog.redcross.org.