From the first time we hear the phrase “stop, drop and roll,” we have it instilled in our minds that we need to be prepared for a fire. However, despite the catchphrases, songs and mascots, most of us fail to make a plan to escape a fire safely.

We understand, you’re busy and might not have time to come up with a plan, or you might think it won’t ever happen to you. To make it easier for you, we have put together a simple Fire Escape Plan that you can use to keep you and your family safe in the event of a fire.

Step 1: Get Effective Smoke Alarms
While most homes come equipped with standard ionization smoke alarms, these have been proven to be ineffective at warning people in time if at all. Crossfire Alarms provides both Heat and Smoke alarms that work together to warn you faster than any other smoke detector on the market. These alarms should be installed in every sleeping area, in hallways, and basically in every room of the home, because a fire can start in any room.

Step 2: Determine Safe Escape Routes
Have everyone in your household walk through the entire home to find the fastest way outside from each room. Once you have agreed on the fastest route, find the second fastest. This will come in handy if your initial route is unsafe.

Step 3: Determine A Safe Meeting Place
If there is a fire in your home, you and everyone else need to get out of the house. A meeting place will help everyone know not only where to go that is a safe distance form the flames, but will also help you determine if anyone is still left inside.

Step 4: Memorize Emergency Numbers
Even though we all have smartphones that can look up any police station’s number, it is still good practice to have their direct line memorized. That way, if you somehow forget your phone inside, you can still contact emergency responders.

Step 5: Practice, Practice, Practice
Once you and your family have determined escape routes and a meeting spot, practice. Time yourselves over and over taking multiple routes. That way if a fire does happen, your entire family knows how long it takes to get form point A to safety.

Step 6: Helping Others Out
When your family comes up with a plan, it is important to determine who might need assistance getting out. Toddlers, older adults, and even pets might not be able to get out of the house themselves or fully comprehend what is happening. If you have others in your home who may need assistance, make sure you plan and practice what to do to get them out quickly and safely.

Step 7: Avoid Causing A Fire
Now that your family knows how to escape a fire, it’s time to learn how to avoid using this new knowledge all together. Go over fire safety information with each family member, and include the fire dangers that are present in each room of the house.