Fire Rescue Victoria

A fire in your home can be devastating, even fatal. Once a fire starts it can spread rapidly putting you and those you live with at risk.

Every household should have a home fire escape plan. Practise it regularly.

  • Know the quickest, safest way to escape from every room
  • Agree on a safe place to meet outside
  • Make sure your street number is visible so emergency services can find you quickly
  • Keep your exits clear
  • Always leave keys in locked doors and security screens when you are inside
  • If you live or stay in a high-rise building
  • Write and/or draw your home fire escape plan and practice it with all the people you live with

For more information specific to people at higher risk, please click here.External Link

  • Design your home fire escape plan to suit your home and talk about it with everybody who lives with you.

    If a child has been involved in planning and practising a home fire escape plan they are more likely to escape safely from a fire.

    Make sure you mark in:

    • all your smoke alarms
    • all your exits
    • your Safe Meeting Place
    • your address

    Click here to create your own Interactive Home Fire Escape PlanExternal Link .

    To get started:

    • Enter your Name
    • Enter the words My Home in the School details section

    (FRV acknowledges and appreciates that this facility is provided with the consent of the Tasmanian Fire Service)

  • No matter what type of home you live in, it is vital you know what to do if a fire occurs:

    Crawl down low and stay out of the smoke
    • In a building fire the safest area for breathing is near the floor where the air is cooler and cleaner
    • Move quickly to the nearest safe exit
    • Check for heat on internal doors with the back of your hand. If the door is hot, use another exit

    Alert other people on your way out

    • Shout ‘FIRE’ to warn everyone to escape the home as quickly as possible
    • Older people, people living with disability and children may require assistance and directions
    If safe to do so, close doors as you exit
    • Slow the spread of smoke and fire as you escape

    Get out and stay out

    • Never go back inside!

    Meet at a safe place outside your home

    • Your Safe Meeting Place should be away from smoke and fire, off the road and where emergency services can easily locate you eg your letter box, the footpath or a tree

    Call Triple Zero (000) and ask for FIRE

    • Tell the Triple Zero call taker the address and if anyone is still inside
    • Stay on the phone until asked to disconnect
    • Wait at your Safe Meeting Place for firefighters to arrive
    • Teach children how to call Triple Zero (000) responsibly

    If you are trapped by smoke and fire and can’t escape:

    • If it is safe, close the door to the room on fire
    • Place a towel, blanket, doona, clothing or pillow under the door to slow the smoke from entering
    • Move as far away from the smoke and fire as possible
    • Call Triple Zero (000), ask for FIRE and say you need help to get out – don’t hang up.

    For more information on the Triple Zero process (available in 15 languages) go to:

    Emergency Services Telecommunications Authority (ESTA)External Link

    To help you pinpoint your location in an emergency download the Emergency+ appExternal Link .

  • Triple zero (000) should be called only when you need police, fire or ambulance.

    Always call triple zero if there is a threat to life or property.

    When you call triple zero, Telstra will ask: police, fire or ambulance?

    If you are calling from a mobile phone, you will then be asked: Which state are you calling from?

    Your call will then be connected to a triple zero operator who will help you.

    The operator will need two pieces of information:

    • the address where you need police, fire or ambulance to come
    • exactly what is happening.

    The call-taker will then ask you a series of questions to gather as much information as possible and organise the appropriate help. This will not delay an emergency response and ensures the responders have all the information they need to provide the best care they can.

  • People over 65, people living with a disability and those who are ill are at a higher risk of being injured or not surviving a fire in their home.

    Disability, illness or older age can affect a person’s ability to respond to a fire.

    Older people and people with a disability should escape and call Triple Zero (000) rather than attempt to fight a fire.

    Consider your situation:

    • Will reduced hearing, vision or sense of smell mean you are slower to realise there is a fire?
    • Will reduced mobility affect how you would safely escape a fire in your home?

    A home escape plan will ensure you can safely escape in any emergency at any time of the day or night.

    Practise it with a family member, carer, friend or neighbour so that they can assist you to identify any improvements.

    Your home escape plan may consider the following:

    • Locating your bedroom close to an exit
    • Keeping your bedroom clear of clutter around your bed and doorway
    • Storing non-powered mobility aids, such as walking frames or wheelchairs, within easy reach in the bedroom at night
    • Keeping a telephone by your bed when you sleep
    • If you have a personal alarm, always wearing it in bed
    • Keeping the key in deadlocked doors or security screens when you are at home – never deadlock a door and remove the key unless you are leaving the home

Reviewed 10 January 2023

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