Prepare Your Home

What You Can Do
  • 9-1-1.  Teach children when and how to call 911.  
  • Utility Turn-Offs.  Teach each member of the family why and how to turn off the water, gas, and electricity.  
  • Coordinate family communications in case of an emergency.  Designate places for family members to meet outside the home (for fire), outside the neighborhood (if you can’t get home), and outside the city (in the event of a widespread evacuation). Make sure everyone has the phone number and address of the out-of-town contact inside their personal emergency kit.  
  • Smoke Detectors.  Install at least one smoke detector on every floor, and replace old batteries every year.
  • Fire Extinguishers.  Purchase fire extinguishers, and keep at least one in the kitchen.  Date and replace them every 6 years.  
  • Carry survival kits in your cars (blanket, food, water, flashlight, candles, matches, flares, etc.)  
  • Compile a detailed household inventory of your possessions and valuables—preserve copies in a safe place.  Photograph your home’s contents, taking close-ups of individual items and entire rooms (to show that the items were located in your home).  Take pictures of furniture, appliances, clothing, electronics, collectibles, jewelry, antiques, musical instruments, sports equipment, and other valuable belongings.  Make a list of these items, including serial numbers.  Print the photographs, or store them on CD’s.  Keep your itemized lists and photographs in a safety deposit box or in another location away from your home—with a friend or family member.  Having an inventory can help process a loss or damage claim after a disaster or burglary.
  • Water Safety.  Teach children water safety and swimming, an enjoyable life skill.  
  • House Numbers.  Make sure emergency personnel can see your house numbers clearly from the street.
  • Insulate pipes entering your home so they don’t freeze.  
  • Prevent Carbon Monoxide Poisoning.    Many people have died from accidental carbon monoxide exposure.  Dangerous devices include propane-fired heaters, kerosene lamps, barbecue grills, gas generators, and gas-fired tools used in enclosed places.  Faulty gas or oil heaters also are a risk.
    • Exposure to carbon monoxide can cause unconsciousness—even death—in a short period of time.  The gas blocks oxygen from getting into the blood, heart and brain, smothering you.  Remember—carbon monoxide is invisible, odorless, tasteless and difficult to detect without special equipment. 
    • Install battery-operated carbon monoxide detectors in your home, especially if your garage is attached to your house.
    • If your carbon monoxide detector sounds, evacuate your home immediately, and call 911.  The fire department carries CO detectors.
    • Seek prompt medical relief if you suspect carbon monoxide poisoning and develop headaches, feel dizzy, light-headed, or nauseated.
    • Never use a generator, charcoal grill, camp stove, or other gasoline or charcoal-burning device inside your home, basement or garage, or outside near a window.
    • Do not keep a car or truck engine running inside a garage attached to your house, even if you leave the garage door open.

    • Make sure gas stoves and fireplaces are vented properly.

    • Never heat your house with a gas oven, even for a short time.

    • Service gas, oil or coal heating systems, water heaters and other appliances using qualified technicians.
  • Will your home survive a wildfire?  Be Firewise.  Contact SCD (Spokane Conservation District) for a free property assessment. 
    Spokane Conservation District
    210 N. Havana St.
    Spokane, WA   99202
    (509) 535-7274 
    http://www.sccd.org/

  • Sign up for Spokane's community warning system.  Alert Spokane is a Reverse 911 system that issues local emergency warnings to people living near an emergency situation. 
Alert Spokane can send automated emergency messages via telephone, cellular phone, Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) or email to residents and businesses located within Spokane County. This system may be used by emergency response personnel to notify specific homes and businesses at risk with specific information about an emergency event, such as
    • information about a hazardous situation,
    • request from police to help solve crimes or find missing persons,
    • or emergency protective measures during a disaster.
You will only be called when the associated address will be impacted by an emergency.  For more information:
https://www.spokanecounty.org/3007/Alert-Spokane


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