ESFI Offers Many Fire Protection Week Resources

Preventing electrical fires is the focus on the Electrical Safety Foundation International's preparations for the upcoming week.

The Electrical Safety Foundation International is joining forces with the National Fire Protection Association to promote Fire Prevention Week 2012, set for Oct. 7-13. NFPA's "“Have 2 Ways Out" campaign focuses on planning to make a safe escape during a fire, and ESFI's resources aim to help the public prevent electrical fires.

Electrical failures or malfunctions were involved in an estimated 46,500 home fires in 2010 that caused 420 deaths, 1,520 injuries, and $1.5 billion in property damage, according to NFPA.

"The complexity of the home electrical system can be intimidating, and many people don't realize that there are simple precautions that can be taken to help prevent home electrical fires," said ESFI President Brett Brenner. "We want to educate the public about the electrical system, but also teach them how to identify potential hazards. Things like damaged power cords or cracked outlet cover plates can easily be identified and corrected."

ESFI's Fire Prevention Week 2012 Toolkit features a checklist and tip sheets about how to properly maintain both smoke alarms and arc fault circuit interrupters, while the Virtual Fire Drill is an interactive demonstration that allows families to test their fire safety knowledge as they "escape" from a simulated home fire. P.I. Plug's Smoke Alarm Safety Video teaches children about the importance of smoke alarms and simple fire safety skills.

"We applaud the NFPA for their Fire Prevention Week efforts, and we hope to make good electrical safety habits a prominent part of this important national dialogue," Brenner said.

The ESFI materials can be downloaded free from www.electrical-safety.org.

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