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A fire can break out anywhere. Here’s what you can do about fire safety for your children – in your houses, neighbourhoods, malls and schools.
Nothing hurts a parent more than to see their child suffer. Whether it is an illness, an emotional or a physical injury, we wish we could set it right straightaway. Yet, few of us are actually worried about fire hazards around our children, when over 20,000 people die every year in fire related accidents including children.
This brings me to the reality of fire safety. Most of us don’t give any thought to it. “It will never happen to me or my child,” is what almost each one of us thinks. And this is one of the reasons why we live in ignorant bliss while our houses, neighbourhoods, malls and even schools, yes schools, are sometimes sitting ducks for fire accidents.
As a parent, it worries me that our public places often openly flout fire safety norms. How many of us are aware of how fire safe are our schools, our malls, our hospitals or even our homes? We are not! It is not something that we ponder over.
Would you, like me, want to make a beginning?
Also endeavour to pay more attention to fire safety in your public spaces. Talk to your kids’ school and find out what measures they have in place in case of a fire emergency. It is possible that they haven’t given a thought to it or have just some cursory fire fighting equipment that has not been serviced for years only because parents don’t pay attention to fire safety.
Force them to think and take corrective action. Holding a fire safety drill for children could be the next step.
Similarly, be more engaged in how equipped are our other public places in the event of a fire. Last time, I went to watch a movie with my children, I actually spent some extra time to note where the Emergency Exits in the theatre were.
While taking the stairs to go to the parking lot, I noticed that the staircase was quite wide and that each floor had a fire safety notice put up about evacuation in case of an emergency and fire extinguishers on each floor. I was happy to note that there was some effort done there.
Let’s make fire safety a pertinent issue. Next time, you go to a public space, I urge you to observe, question and speak up.
Beyond Carlton was founded by a group of people who lost their loved ones in a fire at Carlton Towers in Bangalore, and works to spread awareness on fire safety.
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Published here earlier.