For several months now my son, Sterling, and grand daughter, Kyra, and have driven by a construction site of a new fire station in West Fargo. Lucky for them, once construction was complete they held an open house to celebrate the new station and it was an excellent opportunity for the family to learn more about the roll firefighters play in the community and steps they can take in their own home to stay safe in case of a fire.
The visit made my son think of how, as a home inspector in the Fargo and Moorhead area, he is always highlighting areas where fire could be a concern for a new home buyer.
Make sure the door leading from your garage to the interior of the home is fire rated. Typically the edge of the door will have a fire rated seal made of neoprene weatherstripping or other material.
Ensure that the door is self-closing either by latch or spring hinges. Spring hinges are fairly easy to install yourself because you can attach them one at a time and leave the door hung during the installation.
Verify that you have a proper firewall between the garage and the interior of your home. Check for exhaust vents, attic hatches and other protrusions that might cause a break in your firewall.
Invest in commercially available fire extinguishers for your kitchen and garage and make sure you and your family know where they are and how to use them in an emergency.
Develop an escape route from your home in case of a fire and practice it with your family on a regular basis.
Know the location of the fire station nearest to your home and take time to visit. If you are like them and own a home built on slab you might ask if the fire station is available as a shelter during a bad storm or tornado. Also, check with your home owner's insurance if a new fire station has opened in your area. You may find that your rates will decrease because of your close proximity to the station.
During their visit they got to climb around a fire truck, try on some of the equipment firefighters use in their job, learn about fire safety and most importantly to Kyra, have some free cookies and juice.
Mid-America Inspection Services, serving Fargo and West Fargo, North Dakota, Moorhead, Alexandria, Fergus Falls, Detroit Lakes, Wadena and the Minnesota Lakes Region
218-443-3555, 320-846-0004, 218-287-0877, 218-841-0444