Vacation Time Means Hotel And Motel Safety

Monte Carlo fire January 2008. Credit Joe Rago via Flickr

By Staff Reports

(Victor Valley)- – With the hot summer months comes wildfire awareness and planning for the “what ifs” regarding if the fire breaks out near our homes and property.  Are you READY… for the possibility of an approaching wildfire? Are you SET… do you have a family communications and escape plan and an emergency supply kit?  Are you ready and set to GO… have you practiced your escape plan and do you know what to do if you are trapped?  For the answers to these questions, you can go to http://www.readyforwildfire.org/ .

However, the hot summer months also means vacations and vacations many times means spending time at hotels, motels and resorts.  You still need to be prepared for the possibility of fire.  The Unites States Fire Administration reports that there are an estimated 3,900 hotel and motel fires reported throughout the United States each year.  CAL FIRE San Bernardino-Inyo-Mono Unit Chief Tim McClelland says “when you stay in a hotel or motel it is important to maintain fire safety for you and your family by becoming familiar with your surroundings and making sure that everyone knows the escape routes.”

Here are some suggestions from the U. S. Fire Administration and CAL FIRE:

  • When making your reservations, ask if the hotel or motel has smoke alarms and an automatic fire sprinkler system.
  • When traveling, take a flashlight with you.
  • Read the fire evacuation plan carefully.  If one is not posted in your room, request one from the front desk.
  • Locate the two exits nearest your room.
  • Count the number of doors between your room and the exits.  This will assist you if there is an emergency evacuation.
  • Locate the fire alarms on your floor.

Chief McClelland also says, “Taking just a few moments when you arrive at your hotel or motel to learn the fire safety information can be a life saver later on.”  The U. S. Fire Administration and CAL FIRE also have some life safety tips for your vacation hotel or motel.

  • Never smoke in bed.  Statistics show that nationwide there is an average of 365 deaths and 925 injuries from fires related to smoking in bed.
  • If there is a fire in your room, get out quickly.  Close the door, sound the alarm and notify the front desk.
  • Always use a stairwell, never an elevator.  The elevator could stop at the floor of the fire.
  • If the fire is not in your room, leave if it is safe to do so.  Be sure to take your room key with you in case the fire blocks your escape and your need to re-enter your room.
  • To check the hallway for fire, touch the door with the back of your hand to test the temperature.  If the door is cool, get low to the floor, brace your shoulder against the door and open it slowly.  Be ready to close it quickly if there are flames on the other side.  Crawl low in the smoke to the nearest exit; the freshest air is near the floor.
  • If your room is hot, do not open it.  Instead, seal the door with wet towels or sheets.  Turn off the fan, heater, and air conditioner.  Call the fire department to give your location. Signal from your window.

It is always important no matter what you are doing or where you are; take a few minutes to be fire wise in order to be fire safe.

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