Window Screens Keep Bugs Out But Won’t Keep Kids In!

It is Week Three of the Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department’s “S.T.E.P. (Safety Takes Every Person) Into Safety” campaign. The theme this week deals with an issue that tragically comes up usually in the fall and spring: children falling out of open windows. Sadly, this has resulted in serious injury and death.

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Photo Via the National Safety Council web site

Open windows are a safety risk to children. Screens DO NOT prevent children from falling out. Windows must operate easily for emergency exits in case of fire, but should be made “childproof” by following these safety tips:

  • Keep children away from open windows
  • Never leave children alone in rooms with open windows
  • Open windows from the TOP when possible, or only open four inches from bottom
  • Keep beds, chairs, and other “climbing aids” away from windows
  • Consider installing window guards
  • Educate older children about the dangers of open windows

You can follow the “S.T.E.P. (Safety Takes Every Person) Into Safety” campaign on our social media channels. The hashtag for the campaign is #SafeFairfax

Twitter: https://twitter.com/ffxfirerescue
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/ffxfirerescue/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/fairfaxcountyfirerescue/

Summer Is Not Over Yet! Practice Heat Safety Today!

Summer is not over yet! Warmer temperatures are in store today. According to the National Weather Service, heat is one of the leading causes of weather-related fatalities each year. However, heat related deaths are totally preventable.

Take a moment to learn how to practice heat safety wherever you are today. Also know the symptoms of Heat-Related Illness.

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Accessible information can be found HERE: https://www.weather.gov/safety/heat

Herndon Apartment Fire Caused By Unattended Cooking

NEWS copy Flame

On Sunday, September 29, at approximately 12:47 p.m., units from Fairfax County Fire and Rescue and Loudoun County Fire and Rescue were dispatched for a reported apartment fire in the 900 block of Park Avenue in the Town of Herndon.

Units arrived on the scene of a three-story, garden style apartment to find smoke showing from the attic. Crews were able to work quickly to extinguish the fire and contain it to the apartment where the fire started. There were no firefighter injuries reported. One civilian was transported to an area hospital for a check-up.

Five occupants were home when the fire was discovered. Twenty-six occupants were in the apartment building at the time of the fire. There were no smoke alarms in the apartment. There were working smoke alarms in the adjacent apartments.

Fire Investigators determined that the fire was accidental in nature and started in the kitchen. The cause of the fire was grease that ignited in a pan on the cook stove after being left unattended.

Ten occupants from two apartments were displaced because of the fire. Red Cross assistance was offered and accepted. Damages were approximately $93,750.

Cooking related fires are one of the leading cause of fires locally and nationally. Fairfax County Fire and Rescue would like to remind all residents about cooking safely. Please remember to “Watch What You Heat!

Recipe for Safe Cooking

Herndon Apartment Fire Caused By Improperly Discarded Smoking Materials

On Sunday, September 29, at approximately 7:50 p.m., units were dispatched for a reported garden apartment fire in the 2400 block of Masons Ferry Drive in the Herndon section of Fairfax County.

Units arrived on scene with fire showing from a fourth-floor balcony.  A second alarm was immediately requested which brought units from Loudoun County Fire and Rescue Department. Crews rapidly extinguished the fire. There were no firefighter or civilian injuries reported.

One occupant was home at the time of the fire. The occupant discovered the fire on the balcony and attempted to extinguish the fire prior to fire department arrival. Smoke alarms were present and activated.

Fire Investigators determined that the fire was accidental in nature and started on the fourth-floor balcony. The cause of the fire was improperly discarded smoking materials.

There were twenty occupants displaced because of the fire. Red Cross assistance was offered and accepted. Damages as a result of the fire were approximately $76,000.

Did you know that so far in 2019, damages as a result improperly discarded smoking materials is over $2.2 Million! There have now been 30 significant incidents with one death and one burn injury.

The members of your Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department want to help eliminate this totally preventable cause of fire and keep Fairfax County safe! If you smoke, or know someone who does, please take a moment to learn how to prevent starting a fire. Got To Smoke It? Sink It Or Soak It!

 

Great Falls House Fire Caused By Electrical Event

NEWS copy Flame

On Saturday, September 28, at approximately 2:19 a.m., units were dispatched for a reported house fire in the 600 block of River Bend Road in the Great Falls area of Fairfax County.

Units arrived on scene to find a one-story, single family home with fire through the roof. A second alarm was requested. Two occupants were inside home and quickly escorted outside by firefighters. Crews rapidly extinguished the fire. There were no civilian or firefighter injuries reported.

Two occupants were home at the time of the fire. A passerby observed fire coming from the home and called 9-1-1. Smoke alarms did not activate due to the location of the fire.

Fire Investigators determined that the fire was accidental in nature and started on the exterior of the home. The cause of the fire was an electrical event involving the wiring for the outside flood light.

Two occupants were displaced because of the fire. Red Cross assistance was offered but declined. Damages as a result of the fire were approximately $55,000.

 

Improperly Discarded Smoking Materials Cause Mount Vernon Townhouse Fire

On Saturday, September 28, at approximately 3:44 a.m., units were dispatched for a reported townhouse fire in the 4300 block of Birchlake Court in the Mount Vernon section of Fairfax County.

Units arrived on scene of a two-story, middle unit townhouse with fire showing from the rear of the home. A second alarm was immediately requested which brought units from Fort Belvoir Department of Fire and Emergency Services. Crews worked quickly to extinguish the fire and contain it to the outside of the home. There were no firefighter or civilian injuries reported.

Four occupants were home at the time of the fire. A neighbor discovered the fire and woke the occupants who self-evacuated prior to fire department arrival. Smoke alarms were present but did not activate due to location of the fire.

Fire Investigators determined that the fire was accidental in nature and started on the deck of the townhouse. The fire was caused by the improper disposal of smoking materials.

No occupants were displaced because of the fire. Red Cross assistance was offered and declined. Damages as a result of the fire were approximately $22,000.

Did you know that so far in 2019, damages as a result improperly discarded smoking materials is over $2.1 Million! There have been 29 significant incidents with one death and one burn injury.
Sink It PREVENT CARELESS FIRE

The members of your Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department want to help eliminate this totally preventable cause of fire and keep Fairfax County safe! If you smoke, or know someone who does, please take a moment to learn how to prevent starting a fire. Got To Smoke It? Sink It Or Soak It!

  • Never dispose of cigarette butts in potted planting soil. The soil, when it gets too dry, can become highly flammable.
  • Never flick cigarettes into mulch or shrubbery. Dispose of them in a suitable ashtray or bucket with sand. Ensure designated outside smoking areas have an appropriate fireproof container, ashtray or bucket.
  • Completely douse butts and ashes with water before throwing them away, as they can smolder and cause a fire.
  • Never smoke in bed.
  • Provide large, deep ashtrays with a center support for smokers. Check furniture for any dropped ashes before going to bed. Empty ashes into a fireproof container with water and sand.
  • Keep smoking materials away from anything that can burn (i.e., mattresses, bedding, upholstered furniture, draperies, etc.).
  • Never smoke in a home where oxygen is being used.
  • If you smoke, choose fire-safe cigarettes. They are less likely to cause fires.
  • To prevent a deadly cigarette fire, you must be alert. You won’t be if you are sleepy, have been drinking, or have taken medicine or other drugs.
  • Keep matches and lighters up high, out of children’s sight and reach.

 

How Home Fire Sprinklers Work

It is Week Two of the Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department’s “S.T.E.P. (Safety Takes Every Person) Into Safety” campaign. The theme this week has highlighted a very important life safety tool: residential fire sprinklers.

Did you know that we are at greatest risk from fire in our own homes?!

Most people might think that hotels pose the greater risk. In fact, hotels tend to be safer because most have fire sprinklers installed!

Unfortunately, due to movies and television commercials, there are many myths and misconceptions about home fire sprinklers that may make homeowners reluctant to install fire sprinklers in their homes.

According to the National Fire Protection Association, these are the facts about home fire sprinklers:

  • It is extremely rare for sprinklers to operate accidentally. In a typical home, water damage will be considerably less from unwanted sprinkler discharges than from other plumbing mishaps.
  • Cigar smoke and burnt toast cannot cause a sprinkler to operate. Only the high temperature that results from a fire will activate the sprinkler.
  • All the sprinklers do not activate at once. This scenario may be common in movies and TV shows, but it just isn’t true for home fire sprinklers. Only the sprinkler closest to the fire activates. Ninety percent of the time, one sprinkler contains the fire.