The Residential Fire Safety Project

Uploaded by lufehuro on 14.03.2012

Welcome to this instruction video on using the smoke and fire safety action planner.
I'm Bill Swenson from the Inclusive Preparedness Center,
a nonprofit organization.
At IPC, we work to improve home fire safety
and emergency preparedness for all people.
Information about smoke and fire safety at home is widely available in the United States,
but not enough people make use of it.
Most people know they should maintain smoke alarms and practice escape plans,
but they don't do it.
Long experience has taught us that a friend, family member,
or staff person from a trusted organization,
can be most effective in assisting a person who needs help
getting started on improving their home fire safety.
Trusted organizations are particularly important,
because a Senior Center, Home Health Care agency,
or Human Service agency
can make fire safety planning with the people the organization serves
part of the staff person's job.
They also have the advantage that they can regularly include fire safety actions
in their meetings with the people they assist.
But how does the staff person know what to say and do?
How does the organization train their staff or volunteers
to do the right thing?
That's where the Action Planner comes in.
It lays out a path, illustrated with pictures and just a few words,
to structure face-to-face active planning
between the person who needs help and the person helping.
The Instruction Manual explains how to use the Action Planner in a series of planning sessions.
Funded by an Assistance to Firefighters grant, IPC developed these materials
with the help of fire experts and Fire Life Safety Educators from across the country.
They're available free to fire agencies and partner organizations
throughout the United States,
and hundreds of thousands are in use.
This video shows how to use the Action Planner and Instruction Manual to help people plan.
It also explains why the materials can make FLSEs and partnering organizations
more effective in reaching hard to reach people.
Let's take ten minutes to look at the Planner and the Manual
and you'll see why they can be used to create a process
that actively engages people in fire safety planning.
The Action Planner is not an information brochure,
and contains no information statements.
It is a sequence of pictures and a few words on a path used to structure a face-to-face planning activity.
The product of this planning is not a written plan,
but changed behavior with smoke alarms, cooking,
home heating, and other sources of smoke and fire danger in the home.
When the cover of the Action Planner is opened, it reveals a full two-page work surface
with the path running up and down and across the pages.
Because it uses many pictures and few words, it is flexible and adaptable to any person and their living situation:
single or married,
old or young,
living in an apartment or a house,
in a city or the country.
It is action focused and person centered.
The person being helped to plan is not told anything about fire safety to start with.
Instead, they are asked, with the first set of pictures,
to talk about who lives in their home and what sort of building it is.
This engages them actively in the process of planning.
Each picture is an occasion to bring into the planning process
anyone more vulnerable to smoke and fire who lives in or visits the home.
The pictures cover most cases, but are not exhaustive.
The empty "Other" box is very important.
It allows the planner freedom to add in a person, or pet, or service animal
who lives with them.
It personalizes the process, and continues the active engagement.
Let the planner write down who they wish to add,
or do that for them if they want.
The "concerns" space may be the most important step on the path
because it further personalizes the process of planning
The planner should be asked what his or her most important concerns would be
if a fire broke out at home.
This continues the process of asking instead of telling.
It directs the planner's attention to how he or she could be hurt by a home fire.
It intensifies engagement in the planning process.
After talking about their concerns,
some planners may start to feel overwhelmed and anxious,
as if the full responsibility for their home fire safety depended upon them alone.
The next pictures on the path provide examples people and organizations
that can help with home fire safety planning.
Just as it is more likely that people will start doing fire safety planning
with a friendly and trusted co-planner,
it is likely that they will keep it up when their family,
a neighbor, or regular home visitor, like a visiting nurse,
plans with them on a regular schedule.
At this step, the co-planner may have information about fire department help,
or other help, to contribute to the conversation.
That covers the first two pages.
We can see now that each step on these pages is designed to draw the person who needs help
into active engagement with the co-planner and with the planning process.
By the end of these pages they have discussed who lives in their home,
what their concerns are about smoke and fire in their home,
and who could be involved in fire safety planning with them.
Now the co-planner is ready to start sharing information
with the planner about smoke alarms,
home fire plans,
and practicing to get out and stay out.
It is time to turn the page and move on to the rest of the planning path.
Notice how the blue planning path leads through the basic steps of home fire safety planning:
smoke alarms and other warnings;
other devices;
maintaining smoke alarms;
making a plan;
practicing getting out;
staying out;
and what to do if you can't get out.
We can't cover each step in the short introduction,
but we will look at the first mention of smoke alarms,
and then show how the Instruction Manual gives some information and actions for each set of pictures.
The first picture is of a smoke alarm.
By this time a conversation about fire safety should be established
between the co-planner and the planner,
and the discussion can turn to smoke alarms.
This is an important step because smoke alarms are so important for fire safety,
but also because this is the point where the co-planner may know a lot about smoke alarms
and be tempted to say too much to the planner.
The planner should stay involved at this step,
and be focused on taking action to install and maintain smoke alarms.
The co-planner should be ready to ask and answer questions,
test existing smoke alarms,
and make sure one or more smoke alarms are working in the home.
The planning at this stage may easily include carbon monoxide alarms,
and how to maintain smoke alarms.
The other pictures at this Warning step show other ways to get or give warnings,
and should be used to add to the planning about smoke alarms.
Fire Life Safety Educators from fire agencies know what to say about each of these pictures.
But how will a volunteer or organization staff member know what to do and say?
That's where the Instruction Manual comes in.
When the cover is opened, the page on the right explains how the co-planner and planner work together.
It also explains that the Instruction Manual can be used
as a self teaching tool by a co-planner,
or as a training tool to train co-planners to do this interactive planning process.
When that page is opened,
the three-page working surface gives actions to take, questions to ask,
and basic information to share at each step on the planning path.
The set of actions, questions, and information at each step of the path in the manual
correspond to the steps of the planning path in the Action Planner
Much more information can be found online, or from fire educators,
but the manual gives the basics needed to support the planning process.
Here are the suggested questions and actions
to support discussion and action to have working smoke alarms in the planner's home.
These are not the only questions and actions;
they can be adapted to the needs of the particular planner and their home.
Each step is important,
and taken together, are too much to cover in one planning session.
That's why several meetings are more effective.
The focus of the whole path is on getting warnings
and being ready to get out and stay out if a fire happens.
The questions, actions, an information suggested for each step of the path in the Instruction Manual
help a co-planner and planner work together
to substantially improve fire safety in the planner's home.
There is also a section on what to do if you can't get out.
Suppose the fire alarm goes off and it is impossible to get out of the bedroom
and use one of the planned escape routes.
What should the planner do until the fire department arrives?
The section of the Action Planner called "If You Can't"
and the corresponding part of the Instruction Manual
give basic actions to keep smoke out of the room and call for help.
The Action Planner is flexible and adaptable to help any resident of a house or apartment
improved their home smoke and fire safety.
Each household and family is unique, with individual needs,
but some universal rules apply to everyone.
The Instruction Manual at the bottom of the three-page working surface
gives some universal rules and also some topics to include
in planning with a planner with individual access or functional needs.
The topics are for families with small children,
people who are blind or have low vision,
and people who are deaf and need a specialty smoke alarm.
Other topics to include in planning are for those who use assistance to understand warnings and directions,
use mobility aids like a wheelchair,
or use assistance to live at home.
On the back of the Action Planner and Manual are sections on fire prevention.
They follow the same pattern as the path:
pictures and a few words on imported activities in the home
where fires can be prevented,
and corresponding suggestions in the Instruction Manual
of what to ask, say, and do
to improve fire prevention
in the planner's home.
Thank you for your attention,
and thank you for all that you do for your communities.