Fire Prevention Week Theme is ‘Every Second Counts: Plan 2 Ways Out!’

Annual Observance Held Oct. 8-14, with Children the Primary Target Audience

FIRE PREVENTION WEEK was Oct. 8-14 this year. Did it make your radar? Did it make your child’s radar through school?

The national observance is promoted in good measure each year by the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), which bills itself as “The leading information and knowledge resource on fire, electrical, and related hazards.”

Fire Prevention Week is one that easily can be observed throughout the year. (Who can let his or her guard down when it comes to fires and fire hazards?) Through the magic of the World Wide Web, the website about the observance is a constant source of safety reminders and educational resources.

The NFPA’s Web page for this year’s Fire Prevention Week campaign can be found at

With the help of its cute teaching character, Sparky, the firefighting Dalmation, the NFPA really strives to reach the children with its primary and secondary Fire Prevention Week messages each year. But, there’s always something that moms, dads, grandmas and granddads can learn, too. This year’s campaign theme was “Every Second Counts: Plan 2 Ways Out!” As the NFPA tells it:

“In a fire, seconds count. Seconds can mean the difference between residents of our community escaping safely from a fire or having their lives end in tragedy. That’s why this year’s Fire Prevention Week theme … is so important. It reinforces why everyone needs to have an escape plan.”

Among the six key Fire Prevention Week campaign messages are these:

  • Draw a map of your home (using the help of a PDF grid available through the website link above) with all members of your household, marking two exits from each room and a path to the outside from each exit.
  • Teach children how to escape on their own in case you can’t help them.
  • Close doors behind you as you leave — this may slow the spread of smoke, heat, and fire.
  • Once you get outside, stay outside. NEVER (we’ve added the emphasis) go back inside a burning building.

An interesting note: Though it has “National” in its name, the NFPA actually is a global nonprofit organization. It was established in 1896 with a mission to eliminate death, injury, property, and economic loss due to fire, electrical, and related hazards.