Home Fire Escape Planning

Experts estimate that you have as little as 2 minutes to safely escape your home once the smoke alarm sounds. Working smoke alarms provide the valuable seconds needed to escape a burning residence.


  • Designate a safe meeting place outside your home where everyone can get to after a fire.
  • Use graph paper to draw a floor plan of your home and to show two ways out of each room.
  • Make sure each family member is aware of escape options from each room.
  • Practice your family escape plan twice each year.
  • Walk through your home periodically and inspect all exits and escape routes.


  • If the smoke alarm sounds, GET OUT AND STAY OUT. Never go back inside for people or pets.
  • If you have to escape through smoke, GET LOW AND GO under the smoke to your way out.
  • Call the fire department from outside of your home.


  • Practice your home fire drill at night and during the day with everyone in your home. Practice twice per year.
  • Practice using different ways out.
  • Teach children how to escape on their own in case you can't help them.
  • Close doors behind you as you leave.

Printable Flyers

Safety Tips from the NFPA

Escape Planning from the State Fire Marshal

Make Your Own Plan

  • Draw a map of your home. Show all doors and windows.
  • Visit each room. Find two ways out.
  • All windows and doors should open easily. You should be able to use them to get outside.
  • Make sure your home has smoke alarms. Push the test button to make sure each alarm is working.
  • Pick a meeting place outside. It should be in front of your home. Everyone will meet at the meeting place.
  • Make sure your house or building number can be seen from the street.
  • Talk about your plan with everyone in your home.
  • Learn the emergency phone number for your fire department.
  • Practice your home fire escape drill!