A recent headline in an Arizona newspaper talked about a man who entered his burning home to save his pets. Firefighters later said he was lucky to be alive, after a lengthy period of trying to find him with thermal cameras; the house was unsafe to enter seconds before the roof collapsed. The man had run in the house twice to rescue his distressed cats, escaped through a back window and then run down an alley for safety. He happened to be lucky in his mission, but not everyone is so lucky.
Fires claim the lives of thousands annually. Some victims are adults who are incapacitated and cannot escape; others are small children left alone in the building while a parent runs down the street to do a common errand. Others are killed when they return to the burning home to save children or pets. And, still others are the firefighters themselves who risk their lives in unsafe conditions to protect and serve the country. It may seem elementary to keep the basic tenets of fire safety in mind, but as we can see, sometimes those tenets bear repeating. Here are just a few:
- The national motto: Stop, Drop and Roll–applicable to children, as well as adults.
- Never go back into a burning building no matter how safe you think it is or how quickly you think you can accomplish the task of saving others. Leave that to the professionals.
- Stay low in smoke.
- Cover your nose and mouth with a rag, mask, or other clothing.
- Keep batteries current in smoke detector carbon monoxide detectors.
- Pay attention when a building alarm sounds.
Fires are caused by many factors, from electrical cord malfunctions, to an owner not paying attention to inspection codes, to a neighbor mishandling fire on a grill or stove. If you have been injured in a fire that was caused by someone’s neglect or ignorance, you could have a personal injury lawsuit on your hands. A lawsuit such as this involves the expert advice of a New York attorney who can lead you in the right direction for obtaining the compensation you deserve.