Your home escape plan

Planning ahead

  • It's important everyone in your home (including children and the elderly) is involved in putting together the escape plan.
  • Everyone should know where the window and door keys are.
  • Your normal way out of the house is your best escape route so always keep it clear of clutter - think of the difficulties you'll have using this route in pitch darkness or smoke.
  • Walk your escape route with the rest of your family or housemates and make sure everyone can open windows and doors easily.
  • Always choose a second escape route, in case the first one is blocked.
  • Review your escape route regularly to take into account any changes in your home.

What to do in a fire

  • Keep calm and act quickly - tell everyone to get out of your home.
  • Seconds count so don't waste time investigating or rescuing valuables.
  • Before opening a door, check it first by using the back of your hand. If it's warm, don't open it!
  • When moving through the home, remember to shut doors behind you to help contain the fire.

If your clothes catch fire - stop, drop and roll

  • If your clothes can fire, don't run around, you will fan the flames and make them burn faster.
  • Lie down and roll around. It makes it harder for the fire to spread and smothers the flames.
  • Smother the flames with a heavy material, like a coat, blanket or a fire blanket.

Escaping through a window

  • You should only try and escape through a window if you're on the ground or first floor and your escape route is blocked. If you're higher up, wait to be rescued by firefighters.
  • If you need to break a window, use a heavy object to break the glass in the bottom corner. Then knock out the glass. Be careful of jagged edges - make them safe by laying a towel or blanket over them.
  • Break your fall with cushions and bedding.
  • Don't jump - lower yourself down before dropping.

What to do if your escape route is blocked

  • If your escape route is blocked and you can't escape through a window, call 999 immediately and find a room to wait in until firefighters arrive.
  • Open a window in the room and put cushions and bedding around the bottom of the door to block out the smoke.
  • If smoke starts to come into the room - keep low to the floor as this is where the air is cleaner.

Once you've escaped

  • Don't go back inside your home, even if there is someone left inside. Wait for firefighters and when they arrive give them as much information as possible.