The above link is from the live interview with E.S.C.A.P.E.’s president and founder Michael McLeieer on the WKZO AM 590 and FM 106.9 Morning Show – 05/26/2022 at 7:10 a.m.


The above link is from the live interview on the FOX 17 – WXMI Morning Show at 7:40 a.m. 05/27/2022


The above link is from the interview on 6 News – WLNS at 5pm on 05/27/2022

Memorial Day is the unofficial kickoff weekend to the start of summertime fun.  If your weekend plans include grilling, sitting around the campfire or other outdoor celebrations, here are some important tips to keep you and your family safe!

Campfire Safety

Having a campfire can be one of the greatest joys of summer.  Whether roasting marshmallows, cooking a meal or surrounded by family and friends, it’s important to understand how to stay safe around a campfire.

  • Select an appropriate location. Before creating a campfire, make sure you understand any rules or regulations for your area. Avoid building the fire near low-hanging branches, tree roots, structures, and other flammable items. Try to choose a location where your fire will be sheltered from the wind and use campfire rings or other designated campfire accessories whenever possible.

 

  • Use the appropriate campfire fuel. Soft woods like pine, fir, and cedar are best for starting a fire. Start the fire by building a small teepee of dry sticks and igniting it with a match. As the fire gets started, add larger pieces of wood. Remember to keep the fire small. Don’t burn items that may explode or give off toxic fumes. Never use gasoline or other flammable liquids to start a campfire.  Never throw items into a fire. That includes batteries, plastic bags, glass, and aluminum cans.

         CHARCOAL GRILLS:

    • There are several ways to get the charcoal ready to use. Charcoal chimney starters allow you to start the charcoal using newspaper as a fuel.
    • If you use a starter fluid, use only charcoal starter fluid. Never add charcoal fluid or any other flammable liquids to the fire.
    • Keep charcoal fluid out of the reach of children and away from heat sources.
    • There are also electric charcoal starters, which do not use fire. Be sure to use an extension cord for outdoor use.
    • When you are finished grilling, let the coals completely cool before disposing in a metal container.

         PROPANE GRILLS:

    • Check the gas tank hose for leaks before using it for the first time each year.
    • Apply a light soap and water solution to the hose.  A propane leak will release bubbles.
    • If your grill has a gas leak, by smell or the soapy bubble test, and there is no flame, turn off both the gas tank and the grill.  If the leak stops, get the grill serviced by a professional before using it again.  If the leak does not stop, call 911.
    • If you smell gas while cooking, immediately get away from the grill and call 911.  Do not move the grill.
    • If the flame goes out, turn the grill and gas off and wait at least 5 minutes before re-lighting it.
  • Supervise the campfire area continuously. A responsible adult should always be present while a campfire is burning. Encourage small children and pets to stay seated several feet away from the fire. Extinguished campfire areas should still be monitored after the flames have gone out to make sure the campfire does not re-ignite and to make sure that children are not burned by embers, which still retain heat even after the fire is extinguished.

 

  • Completely extinguish the campfire. A roaring fire is both a success, and a responsibility. It is your job to properly maintain and extinguish your campfire when you are finished. Make sure you always have a large bucket of water and metal shovel on hand to put out the fire. Pour lots of water on the fire, drown all embers, not just the red ones, until the hissing sound stops. Stir the campfire ashes and embers with a shovel and pour more water on the ashes, then feel the area to make sure they are cold to the touch.

 

Grilling Safety

According to the National Fire Protection Association, nearly 20,000 people across the United States went to the hospital due to grilling-related injuries from 2014 to 2018.  Grills were involved in nearly 4,000 structure fires in that time.  Seven out of every ten adults in the United States have a grill or smoker, which translates to a lot of tasty meals.  But it also means there’s an increased risk of home fires and thermal burns.  A grill placed too close to anything that can burn is a fire hazard.  Remember:

  • Propane and charcoal barbeque grills should only be used outdoors.
  • The grill should be placed at least 10 feet away from your home or anything that can burn including deck railings and out from under eaves and overhanging branches.
  • Keep children and pets at least three feet away from the grill area.
  • Keep your grill clean by removing grease or fat buildup from the grills and in the trays below the grill.
  • Never leave your grill unattended.
  • Always make sure your gas grill lid is open before lighting it.

CHARCOAL GRILLS:

  • There are several ways to get the charcoal ready to use. Charcoal chimney starters allow you to start the charcoal using newspaper as a fuel.
  • If you use a starter fluid, use only charcoal starter fluid. Never add charcoal fluid or any other flammable liquids to the fire.
  • Keep charcoal fluid out of the reach of children and away from heat sources.
  • There are also electric charcoal starters, which do not use fire. Be sure to use an extension cord for outdoor use.
  • When you are finished grilling, let the coals completely cool before disposing in a metal container.

 

PROPANE GRILLS:

  • Check the gas tank hose for leaks before using it for the first time each year.
  • Apply a light soap and water solution to the hose.  A propane leak will release bubbles.
  • If your grill has a gas leak, by smell or the soapy bubble test, and there is no flame, turn off both the gas tank and the grill.  If the leak stops, get the grill serviced by a professional before using it again.  If the leak does not stop, call 911.
  • If you smell gas while cooking, immediately get away from the grill and call 911.  Do not move the grill.
  • If the flame goes out, turn the grill and gas off and wait at least 5 minutes before re-lighting it.

 

 

Burn Safety

  • To reduce the risk of a burn, never leave items cooking on the stove or grill unattended.
  • Keep children and pets at least 3-feet from the grilling or cooking area.
  • Check the temperature of food before serving it to a child.
  • Never cook while wearing loose fitting clothes.
  • Cool a superficial or partial thickness burn (1st or 2nd degree) with cool running water for 15-20 minutes.  Never cool more than 10% of the body at one time.
  • Seek medical attention for all severe 2nd degree and all third degree (full-thickness) burns.

E.S.C.A.P.E. Fire Safety reminds you that Memorial Day weekend activities are more fun when you know that your kids and family are safe and secure because Fire Is Everyone’s Fight®!

 



Live Interview on WKZO AM 590 and FM 106.9 with our president and founder Firefighter Michael McLeieer – 7:50 a.m. EDT 05/02/2022

Arson Awareness Week 2022 is May 1-7 and it highlights critical actions that emergency responders and the public must take to help ensure everyone stays safe all throughout the year.

The dangers of arson put everyone’s life in peril.  Innocent bystanders, occupants, first responders, and those committing the acts of arson all have a chance to receive debilitating injuries or worse.  The aftermath of these intentional acts can create a devasting fiscal loss for communities.

This year’s theme is Arson in Homeless Communities – Engagement – Education – Outreach.  It’s a great opportunity for numerous stakeholders to join together to combat the issue of vacant residence fires and find solutions for the growing homeless problem as well as develop fire prevention programs within the homeless community.

The focus will be on:

  • Explaining common motives for arson fires in homeless communities
  • Addressing accidental incidents of fire
  • Highlighting injury and incident statistics
  • Identifying resources and training opportunities to help the fire service create outreach strategies and programs.
  • Showcasing successful mitigation concepts throughout the United States

What is Arson? – ARSON IS THE CRIMINAL ACT OF DELIBERATELY SETTING FIRE TO PROPERTY.  (The willful, malicious, intentional and/or reckless burning of your property (dwelling) or someone else’s).

 What can you do?  If you see something, say something.  Call 911.

  • Keep an eye on your property and your neighbor’s property
  • Report anything suspicious
  • Lock vehicles, garages, barns and other out buildings

For more information about arson and ways to prevent arson, visit the United States Fire Administration’s website at www.usfa.fema.gov/aaw

 



Burning Issues in the Kitchen…Watch What You Heat

The smell of a cake baking in the oven or a tasty soup simmering on the stovetop is difficult for both children and adults to resist.  However, cooking remains the number one cause of home fires in Michigan and across the United States.

That’s why National Burn Awareness Week, observed the first full week in February, is a window of opportunity for organizations to mobilize burn, fire and life safety educators and unite in sharing a common burn awareness and prevention message in the community Where You Live.

“47% of all home fires are caused by cooking.  Adults over 65 are at a much higher risk of injury or death from a kitchen fire due to physical, visual, hearing or mental impairments that may slow the quick action necessary in a fire emergency,” according to Firefighter Michael McLeieer, president and founder of the non-profit fire safety charity E.S.C.A.P.E.  Inc.

“Thinner skin of older adults burns faster and deeper,” according to McLeieer.

Here are some tips to stay safe and prepared!

Plan A:  Primary Prevention

  • The best time to cook is when you are wide awake and not drowsy from medications or alcohol.
  • Always wipe clean the stove, oven, and exhaust fan to prevent grease buildup.
  • Wear short or close-fitting sleeves when cooking.
  • Keep a pan lid and dry potholders or oven mitts near you EVERY time you cook.
  • Turn pot or pan handles toward the back of the stove.
  • When heating food in the microwave, use microwave-safe cookware that allows steam to escape.
  • Allow food to rest before removing from the microwave.
  • When frying, use a pan lid or splash guard to prevent grease splatter.
  • Stay in the kitchen while you are frying, boiling, grilling, or broiling food.  If you leave, turn off the stove.
  • If you are simmering, baking, roasting, or broiling food, check it regularly.  Remain in the home while food is cooking, and use a timer to remind you to check on your cooking.
  • After cooking, check the kitchen to make sure all burners and other appliances are turned off.
  • Never use the oven for storage.

Plan B:  Secondary Prevention

If your food does catch on fire…

  1. Cover the pan with its lid.  A cookie sheet works too.  Leave covered until the pan is cool.  NEVER move the pot or carry it outside – the pot is too hot to handle and the contents may splash, causing a severe burn.
  2. Turn the heat off.  With the lid on and the heat off, the fire should quickly put itself out.  NEVER use water to put out a kitchen fire.  Water will cause the oil to splatter and spread the fire, or scald you as it vaporizes.
  3. If the fire is inside the oven or microwave, keep the door shut and turn it off.  Keep closed until the oven is cool.
  4. If the fire gets out of control- get out, stay out and call 9-1-1.  Don’t return inside for any reason.

National Burn Awareness Week is the perfect time to share this information, develop a fire escape plan, check your smoke alarms, and make your kitchen and entire home safe for those you care for where you live!  According to McLeieer, “preventing a burn injury is always better than the pain and trauma of medical treatment afterward.  For more information visit ameriburn.org/prevention/burn-awareness-week.



As the temperatures drop, people tend to resort to using space heaters and other methods to heat their homes and businesses, but they need to play it safe and prevent a home fire or carbon monoxide poisoning.

Michael McLeieer, president and founder of E.S.C.A.P.E. spoke with WLNS TV 6FOX 17 TV, WBKB TV and WKZO AM 590 and FM 106.9 radio this week and shared some simple but important tips and resources to prevent a home fire and increase your chances of surviving a fire should it occur.

WLNS TV 6:

FOX 17 TV:

WKZO Radio:

WBKB TV (Alpena, MI):

Here are a couple of links to some free resources and tips to prevent winter home fires from the National Fire Protection Association

https://www.nfpa.org/Public-Education/Fire-causes-and-risks/Seasonal-fire-causes/Put-A-Freeze-on-Winter-Fires

and United States Fire Administration

https://www.usfa.fema.gov/prevention/outreach/media/social_toolkits/toolkit_heating.html

 



It’s #FirePreventionWeek!  This year’s theme is Learn the Sounds of Fire Safety! ™  E.S.C.A.P.E. Inc. president and founder firefighter Michael McLeieer talks to Ken Lanphear on the WKZO AM 590 and FM 106.9 Morning Show about this year’s theme and steps you and your family can take to prevent a home fire and stay safe.

Here is a link to the live interview on Monday October 4, 2021 at 6:50 a.m.:

 

The next stop of the day was in Grand Rapids on eightWest at WOOD TV 8 at the downtown Media Art Center Studio inside the Grand Rapids Art Museum at Rosa Park Circle.

Here is the link to that broadcast:

 



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Now that the holidays are wraping up, it’s time to take some steps to keep you and your home fire-safe throughout 2021.  Did you know 1 in every 7 home fires and 1 in every 5 home fire deaths involves heating equipment?  Half of all home heating fires occur in December, January and February.

KZO LOGO

Here is the link to the live radio interview with E.S.C.A.P.E.‘s founder Michael McLeieer on December 28th at 7:50 am on WKZO AM 590 and FM 106.9.

After Christmas:

  • Get rid of your real tree after Christmas or when it is dry.  If the needles drop off, it’s time to properly dispose of your tree.  Dried-out trees are a fire danger and should not be left in the home or garage, or placed outside against the home.
  • Check with your local community to find a tree recycling program.
  • Bring outdoor electrical lights inside after the holidays to prevent hazards and make them last longer.

ChristmasTree

Fireplace Safety:

  • With temperatures dropping, a roaring fire on a cold night may be great comfort and a real danger.  Before bringing in the logs to fill the fireplace, keep this safety checklist in mind:
    • Have your chimney inspected and cleaned.  An inspection by a certified chimney sweep will detect any repairs that are needed before you use the fireplace.
      • In August, Television personality Rachael Rae had a home fire which started from the fireplace.
    • When your ready to build a fire, burn seasoned wood only.  Dryness of the wood is more important than how hard the wood is.
    • Burn smaller, hotter fires which produce less smoke than larger fires.
    • Make sure the fireplace has a sturdy screen to stop sparks from flying into the room.
    • Make sure the fire is completely out before going to bed or leaving your home.
    • Don’t use your fireplace to burn cardboard boxes, trash or used wrapping paper in your fireplace.  Sparks from the burning paper can start chimney fires.
    • Remember to keep the flue open until the next day to make sure the fire is completely out.  Always dispose of the ashes in a metal container with a lid, placed outside and at least 10 feet from your home and any nearby buildings.  Ashes can retain heat for several hours and even until the next day.
    • Close the flue after the fire is out to keep the warmth inside and the cold air outside.

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Heating Safety:

As you stay cozy and warm this winter, stay fire smart!  Heating is the second leading cause of home fires!

  • Plug only 1 heat-producing appliance (like a space heater) into an electrical outlet at a time.
  • Turn space heaters off when you leave the room or go to bed.
  • Keep anything that can burn (including kids) at least 3 feet away from any heat source.
  • Never use your oven or stove to heat your home.

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Post-Holiday Entertaining:

  • Test your smoke alarms and tell guests about your home fire escape plan (2-ways out of every room).  E.S.C.A.P.E. can connect anyone needing new smoke or carbon monoxide alarms with their local fire department.  Call 1-844-978-4400 for more details.
  • Never block exits (doors and windows) with holiday decorations, luggage from your guests, boxes or other obstacles.

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By following these simple tips, we all will contribute to Keeping Michigan S.A.F.E.™

NOTE:  As of December 25th, 121 Michiganders have lost their lives in 100 fires throughout Michigan.  Every county in Southwest Michigan has experienced a fatal fire in the past 2-years.  The majority of deaths occurred in homes without working smoke alarms.

The 2020 fire death data resulted in a 21% increase during the same period in 2019 (Jan 1 – Dec 25).

 

 

 



flameless_candle_4

The most wonderful time of the year is also the most likely time of the year for home fires. Home fires during the holiday season often involve space heaters, candles, holiday decorations and Christmas trees. By taking some preventative steps, using common sense, and following some simple rules, most home fires can be prevented during the H.O.L.I.D.A.Y. season and beyond.

Listen to the interview between E.S.C.A.P.E.‘s founder Firefighter Michael McLeieer and Morning Show host Ken Lanphear on WKZO AM 590 and FM 106.9 at 7:50 am on December 21, 2020.

  • Have a home safety escape plan, practice two ways out of every room. One way out could be a door and the second way out could be a window.
  • Outside – Go outside to your family meeting place when the smoke alarm sounds and during fire or smoke conditions.
  • Lighters and matches are tools for adults not toys for kids. Make sure you secure them out of the reach of young and curious hands.
  • Inspect holiday lights and wiring for damage. Replace defective accessories.
  • Detectors – Both smoke and carbon monoxide detectors make great gifts.
  • Always turn off a space heater and holiday lights when you go to bed or leave the room.
  • You can take charge of your holiday safety Where You Live!


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‘Tis the season to water your Christmas tree daily to keep it from becoming dry. Also use care with candles and electric lights to keep this joyous time of year safe. More than 1 out of every 4 home Christmas tree fires is caused by electrical problems. A heat source too close to the tree causes 1 in every 4 of the fires.

 

  • Use flameless candles instead of real candles to prevent a home fire.
  • Create a 1-foot circle of safety (keeping anything that can burn away) if you decide to use real candles. Always blow out candles when you leave the room or go to bed.
  • Choose holiday decorations that are labeled flame retardant or not flammable.
  • Keep your live Christmas tree away from heat sources and room exits.
  • Place fireplace ashes in a metal container with a lid and place the container outside and away from buildings and other combustibles.

Remember as you deck the halls this season, be fire smart and don’t burn them down.

 



installalarmolderadultc3_7

Play the interview with Ken Lanphear and Michael McLeieer on the WKZO AM 590 and FM 106.9 Morning Show from 8:30 am 10/28/2020.

Sunday, November 1st is the time to move your clocks back one hour to standard time.

It’s also a great opportunity to check your smoke and carbon monoxide alarms and make sure they are working properly.

The National Fire Protection Association reports that 71% of smoke alarms which failed to operate had missing, disconnected or dead batteries, making it important to take this time each year to check your smoke and carbon monoxide alarms.

Working smoke and carbon monoxide alarms double the chance of a family surviving a home fire and/or an unsafe carbon monoxide level incident.

 

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E.S.C.A.P.E. Fire Safety encourages you to use this checklist to find out if you are taking the right steps to protect your family:

1. Count Your Smoke Alarms – Be sure there is at least one smoke alarm less than 10 years old installed on every level of your home, including one in every bedroom and outside each sleeping area.

2. Change Your Smoke Alarm and Carbon Monoxide Alarm Batteries – Fire experts nationwide encourage people to change their smoke and carbon monoxide alarm batteries at least once a year. An easy way to remember to do so is to change the battery when you move the clock back to standard time November 1st. Alarms which have a sealed, long-life battery should be good for the life of the alarm (10 years), however they should be tested at least monthly to make sure they are functioning properly.

3. Check Your Smoke Alarms and Carbon Monoxide Alarms – After inserting a fresh battery in each smoke and carbon monoxide alarm, push the safety test button to make sure the alarms are in proper-working condition. Conduct this test monthly. Never disconnect your smoke alarm battery! Remember that a “chirping” alarm is a signal it needs a fresh battery or has reached the end of its 10-year life and needs to be replaced.

4. Clear Your Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Alarms – Ensure your smoke and carbon monoxide alarms’ sensitivity by cleaning them each month of dust and cobwebs.

5. Replace Your Smoke Alarms – The United States Fire Administration recommends replacing smoke alarms every 10 years and having a combination of both ionization and photo electric smoke alarms to alert you to all types of home fires.

6. Change Your Flashlight Batteries – Keep flashlights with fresh batteries at your bedside for help in finding the way out and signaling for help in the event of a fire.

7. Get the Entire Family Involved – Once smoke and carbon monoxide alarms have fresh batteries installed, you should make sure family members, children in particular, know what the alarms sound like and what to do should they go off…Get Out and Stay Out and then call 911 from a safe meeting place once outside!

8. If you need a free smoke or carbon monoxide alarm, contact your local fire department. Many fire departments offer free smoke alarms to local residents.

By following these important reminders, we’re Keeping Michigan S.A.F.E.™ Sometimes saving a life can be that simple – Change Your Clocks and Check Your Alarms!

 

 



national-chimney-safety-week-2020-logo

Interview with E.S.C.A.P.E. Inc. president Lt. Michael McLeieer Monday September 29, 2020 at 8:50 a.m. on WKZO AM 590 or FM 106.9.

As the temperatures cool down outside, you may want to start a fire in the fireplace or turn on the furnace to stay warm, but is your chimney ready to handle the heat?

National Chimney Safety Week 2020 is September 27 – October 3 and is designed to educate homeowners on the inherent dangers of fireplaces and provide them with tips to reduce their risk of suffering a chimney fire or carbon monoxide-related health emergency.

According to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (USCPSC), an average of 17,600 chimney fires occurred annually in the United States between 2015 and 2017, and although this represents a significant drop from previous years, the Chimney Safety Institute of America believes there’s still much room for improvement. CSIA’s vision is that every family enjoys a safe, warm home.

The Facts About Chimney Fires

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Your chimney–and the flue that lines it–adds architectural interest to your home, but its’ real function is to carry dangerous flue gases from your fireplace, wood stove or furnace safely out of your home.    As you relax in front of your fireplace or bask in the warmth of your wood stove, the last thing you are likely to be thinking about is the condition of your chimney.  However, if you don’t give some thought to it before you light those winter fires, your enjoyment may be very short-lived.

Why?

Dirty chimneys can cause chimney fires, which damage structures, destroy homes and injure or kill people. ​   Indications of a chimney fire have been described as creating: loud cracking and popping noise a lot of dense smoke, and an intense, hot smell ​Chimney fires can burn explosively – noisy and dramatic enough to be detected by neighbors or people passing by.  Flames or dense smoke may shoot from the top of the chimney.  Homeowners report being startled by a low rumbling sound that reminds them of a freight train or a low flying airplane.  However, those are only the chimney fires you know about.

Chimney fires are preventable.  When burning wood, only use dry, seasoned wood.

The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) recommends chimneys be inspected annually and cleaned as-needed.  Having your chimney inspected by a CSIA Certified Chimney Sweep before lighting your first fire of the season, is the number one way to prevent potential damage to your home or even the loss of life that may result from a damaged or blocked chimney.

E.S.C.A.P.E. Fire Safety reminds you with more than 1,800 CSIA Certified Chimney Sweeps located across the United States, it has never been easier to find one near you.  To locate your nearest CSIA Certified Chimney Sweep, visit www.csia.org/search and enter your zip code into the locator search tool.



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The above link is the live audio from the August 4th radio interview at 9:10 a.m. between Firefighter Michael McLeieer, founder of E.S.C.A.P.E. and Ken Lanphear, WKZO Morning Show host.

A fire in an office or store can be devasting to a community.  In addition to potential deaths and property loss, people may lose their jobs and the community may lose a vital service provided by the business.

The uncertain future caused by COVID-19 can also make the economic effect of a fire on a business much worse.  Some businesses may have a hard time recovering financially after being shut down for several months due to the pandemic.

Every year in the United States there are 17,000 office and store fires that cause over $800 million in direct property damage.

According to the U.S. Fire Administration, Cooking is the leading cause of office and store fires.  In 2018:

  • 33.2% of office and store fires were caused by cooking,
  • 10.9% were due to electrical malfunction,
  • 8.7% were due to heating,
  • 7.6% were caused by other unintentional reasons or carelessness, and
  • 7.1% were caused by appliances.

Many causes of office and store fires are the same as those for home fires.  Since emergencies happen when we least expect them, prevention and escape planning is essential.

The good news:  Modern building design and fire codes protect most offices and stores from fire.  However, according to ESCAPE Fire Safety, there are important fire safety practices that employees and employers should follow to help prevent workplace fires, keep workers safe and keep offices and stores open.

Employees should:

  • Check for damaged electrical cords and cables.  Don’t overload outlets and power strips.
  • Keep anything that can burn away from electrical equipment.
  • Never leave portable heating devices unattended.
  • Keep your workspace and equipment clean, dry and well ventilated.
  • Plan and practice multiple escape routes in case one is blocked.
  • Ensure windows can be opened and screens can be removed.
  • Remove any obstacles from exits.

Employers need to prepare for emergencies.

  • Make sure smoke alarms and fire sprinklers are properly installed and working.
  • Post clear fire escape plans on every level of a building.
  • Teach employees about exit locations, escape routes and fire protection equipment.
  • Check the condition of fire ladders and escapes.
  • Conduct regular emergency drills.

If there is a fire, building workers should:

  • Call 911.
  • Notify co-workers of the fire.
  • Never use the elevator if there is a fire or during a fire alarm activation.  Walk, don’t run, down the stairs.

If workers can’t evacuate, they should:

  • Seal door gaps with jackets.
  • Wait at the window.
  • Remain calm.

For more information on fire safety in a variety of workplaces, visit www.osha.org or www.escapeinc.org

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