Home Fire Escape Plan

Firetruck with smokey building in background, firefighter training

Fire can spread quickly throughout a home, leaving as little as two minutes to escape safely once the smoke alarm sounds. Making an escape plan and practicing an escape drill are important elements of home fire safety.

Fire escape plan, drawing of floorplan in hosue with smoke alarms labelled

Create an Escape Plan

Everyone needs to know what to do if an emergency situation takes place.

  • Download and create a Home Fire Escape Plan.
  • Draw a floor plan or a map of your home. Show all doors and windows.
  • Mark two ways out of each room.
  • Mark all of the smoke alarms with SA. Smoke alarms should be in each sleeping room, outside each sleeping area, and on every level of the home.
  • Plan and practice your home escape plan.
  • Teach all family members to follow the home escape plan.

people running out of smokey building, fire escape plan

Escape Plan Tips

The best way to ensure everyone is prepared and can evacuate confidently in the event of a fire is to practice and know your escape route.

  • Clear your escape routes.
  • Practice your home fire escape plan twice a year.
  • Always choose the escape route that is safest and with the least amount of smoke and heat.
  • Closing doors on your way out slows the spread of fire, giving you more time to safely escape.
  • Choose an outside meeting place (i.e. neighbor's house, a light post, mailbox, or stop sign) a safe distance in front of your home where everyone can meet after they've escaped. 

Exterior of an apartment building, people walking outside on a sunny day

Apartment or High-rise Condominium Safety

Treat every fire alarm as an emergency. When the alarms sounds, get outside. If you plan ahead and practice fire drills, your chances of survival are greatly increased.

  • Know the locations of all available exit stairs from your floor, in case the nearest one is blocked by fire or smoke.
  • Leave the building right away if you hear the sound of a fire alarm. Stay outside at your meeting place until you are told the building is safe.
  • Stairwell doors are fire doors that must be closed at all times to prevent the spread of fire, smoke and gases.
  • Ensure your building has fire safety plans, including floor plans and evacuation procedures. Fire safety plans should be posted and visible. If they are not, contact the landlord or building manager. 
  • Take the time to review and learn your building's fire safety plan.