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October 8, 2012 (East County, San Diego) -- It only takes seconds for a fire to grow out of control, making escape from a fire impossible. That's why CAL FIRE is urging people to, "Have 2 Ways Out" of their home. In the event of a fire, remember that every second counts, so you and your family must always be prepared. Escape plans help you get out of your home quickly. Prepare and practice your fire escape plan regularly with everyone in your household, including children and people with disabilities.

CAL FIRE and fire departments across the state are taking this opportunity during Fire Prevention Week to remind all Californians of the importance of creating a fire escape plan for your home and practicing it regularly. Most home fires occur at night when people are the least prepared. Tragedy can be avoided by knowing in advance and practicing two escape routes from each room.

"In 2011, 70 percent of structure fires in California reported to the CAL FIRE-Office of the State Fire Marshal were residential and accounted for 90 percent of fire deaths," said State Fire Marshal Tonya Hoover. "Everyone should take steps to help prevent home fires and ensure their family is protected."

Making an escape plan is simple:

  • Draw a map of your home. Mark a door and a window that can be used to get out of every room.
  • Choose a meeting place outside in front of your home. This is where everyone can meet after they've safely escaped. Draw a picture of your outside meeting place on your escape plan.
  • Write the emergency telephone number for the fire department on your escape plan.
  • Check your smoke alarms regularly and have practice escape drills so everyone knows two ways out.

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