Pet Finder Program
Pet Finder Stickers are available at the District
Headquarters. These stickers are placed on all the doors leading into
your home so firefighters know that pets live in your home in the event
you are not home during an emergency.
Pet Finder Stickers are available free of charge at the
Washington Township Fire Department located at the District Headquarters
at 213 E. Holly Ave. Ask for Fire Prevention Coordinator Dan Pacewicz
if you have questions.
Resuscitation/Automated External Defibrillator - Our instructors under
the American Heart Association guidelines conduct CPR/AED classes.
Classes on Heart Saver AED, Heart Saver Healthcare Provider are offered
to Students and Adults throughout the year. For more information,
please call us at (856) 863-4000.
Fire Safety Prevention
There are several ways to protect yourself, your family and your community
Exit Drills In The Home -
Make sure that your entire family knows the escape route out of your
home in case of an emergency; as well as a safe meeting point once you
are out of the building. Practice a home fire drill monthly involving
all members of the household including adults, kids and pets. If you
have a dog for example, take a treat with you to the safe meeting
place. Practicing home fire drills will become second nature to
everyone and in a real emergency, the actions everyone will take will be
Smoke alarms are crucial to
alert you in case you are not near a problem that may occur, or you
are sleeping and in danger. There should be at least 1 smoke alarm on
every level of your home or apartment, as well as one near the
sleeping areas. Make sure you change the batteries in the device at
least once a year and test them monthly to ensure they are working
properly. Please also make sure that there is no dust or dirt in the
alarm, which can cause a malfunction if not properly maintained. Smoke
alarms also have a lifespan of 10-15 years depending on the
manufacturer. Please note this and replace them accordingly!
Make Placement a Priority
A recent NFPA report on smoke detectors found that there
is a substantial number of households that do not have the devices on
every level of the home, as needed. The majority of fire deaths occur at
night when people are asleep. NFPA's National Fire Alarm Code (NFPA 72)
says homes must have smoke detectors on every level of the home
including the basement and outside each sleeping area. New homes are
required to have a smoke detector in each sleeping area as well.
To slow the spread of smoke and fumes if a fire develops,
NFPA suggests that you sleep with your bedroom doors closed. If you
sleep with your bedroom doors closed, install a smoke detector inside
each bedroom. Detectors should also be installed in other areas of your
home where people sleep. In new homes, the National Fire Alarm Code
requires hard-wired detectors to be interconnected, so that if one
detector is activated, all detectors will sound the alarm signal. On
floors without bedrooms, smoke detectors should be installed in or near
living areas, such as family rooms and living rooms.
Detectors that are hard-wired into the home electrical
system should be installed by a qualified electrician. If your detector
plugs into a wall socket, make sure it has a restraining device to keep
its plug from being pulled out. Never connect a detector to a circuit
that could be turned off at a wall switch. Most detectors are
battery-powered and can be installed with a screwdriver and drill and by
following the manufacturer's instructions.
Since smoke and deadly gases rise, detectors should be
placed on the ceiling at least 4 inches from the nearest wall, or high
on a wall, 4-12 inches from the ceiling. This 4-inch minimum is
important to keep detectors out of possible "dead air" spaces, because
hot air is turbulent and may bounce so much it misses spots near a
surface. Installing detectors near a window, door or fireplace is not
recommended because drafts could detour smoke away from the unit. In
rooms where the ceiling has an extremely high point, such as in vaulted
ceilings, mount the detector at or near the ceiling's highest point.
Carbon Monoxide Alarms
Carbon Monoxide alarms are
another crucial and necessary tool to have inside your home. These can
alert you to increased levels of carbon monoxide - a colorless,
odorless, invisible, tasteless gas that can be extremely harmful. You
should have at least one of these in your residence. If you have a
detector and if goes off, get everyone out of the house immediately and
call 911. When in doubt, CALL THE FIRE DEPARTMENT (DIAL 911). There
may not be a problem in your home, but since the gas is very harmful and
you can't tell if it is there, it's better to have the problem checked
by the fire department. Be cautious when using a vehicle in a garage
attached to your home. Running a vehicle without proper ventilation
(garage door open) can cause elevated levels of carbon monoxide in your
It is always best to have a
fire extinguisher easily accessible in your home in case of an
emergency. These must be checked for a proper charge by referencing the
meter on the top of the cylinder. There are many types of fire
extinguishers, and you can purchase an extinguisher that has a specific
one-class rating. However, there are also class ABC extinguishers
available that will protect any class of fire, and they are the best
type to have in your home to protect you. This tells you that the
extinguisher can handle three (3) different classes of fire. The
classes of fire are as follows.
- Class A fires are considered wood and paper
- Class B fires are considered flammable liquids such as gasoline and oil
- Class C fires are anything that involves
electrically energized fires involving electrical equipment such as a
television, lamp or oven.
Chimney and wood stove safety
If you have a fireplace, or
wood stove that heats your home, please be sure that the chimney is
cleaned and checked yearly. Creosote (thick, black residue that is left
from burning wood) can clog chimneys and let dangerous gases enter your
home. Chimneys are also a source of fire. The mortar or lining inside
a chimney can crack and wear away with time, as well as with heat that
is inside the chimney. Cracks inside chimneys can cause a fire to
spread inside the walls, attics, crawl spaces and floors of your home.
Wood Stoves that have elbows in the chimney should be checked often for
ash build up which can clog the chimney and cause a fire. Keep tree
branches and leaves at least 15 feet away from the top of the chimney.
Install a chimney cap to ensure debris and animals stay out of your
chimney. Inside, make sure you have a fireplace screen, or doors closed
to ensure that hot embers and ashes don't get on the carpet. Never
leave fires unattended.
Adopt a Fire Hydrant
The fire hydrants located
around Washington Township are a valuable asset to the Fire Department
and to the community. They provide the main source of water during our
fire fighting activities. It's very common during a major snow storm
for hydrants to be buried either from street plowing or shoveling. When
this happens we are delayed in starting fire suppression operations
because we can't find the hydrant.
To help us, and the
community, we are asking residents to Adopt a Hydrant. As you shovel
your walks and driveways, we ask that you also include the area around
the hydrant that is located on your block. Hydrants are typically
located at the end or middle of each block, but they are used to protect
all of the properties for 500 to 1,000 feet in both directions. In a
fire situation, seconds count! Every few minutes a fire can double in
size so it's important for us to locate a hydrant, connect and establish
a water supply quickly. Please join us in our efforts to keep
Washington Township safe!