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Home Security and Fire Safety

For a safe home, we want to keep burglars out by locking up the doors and windows. But in a fire, a door or window with security bars or locks can keep you from getting to safety in time to save your family.

Protect Against Break-ins and Fire

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  • Replace deadbolt locks that need a key to open from inside. Keys can easily be misplaced when the deadbolt is locked, making it impossible to escape.
Home Safety - Home Security and Fire Safety
  • Choose locks that use keys only outside the door or have a turning or “throwing bolt” or latch inside.
Home Safety - Home Security and Fire Safety
  • If your home entry doors have two-keyed deadbolt locks, protect your family in the meantime by keeping the key to your deadbolt on a hook near the door, but away from any windows. Make sure all responsible family members know exactly where to find the key and how to use it quickly in an emergency.

Window Security/Burglar Bars

Security bars on doors and windows can provide a strong defense against burglars. However, that same protection can prove deadly in a fire emergency.

A home fire can grow so fast and spread so quickly that people may have three minutes or less to get outside to safety. Bars welded over an escape route not only trap people inside; they also prevent firefighters from being able to get them out. The Home Safety Council urges families to make sure security measures do not slow down a quick escape:

Home Safety - Home Security and Fire Safety
  • If you put bars on windows and doors, choose a kind you can open from inside your home. These have a “quick-release mechanism” that lets you open them fast.
Home Safety - Home Security and Fire Safety
  • These bars are designed so no one could reach the opener from outside and come in.
Home Safety - Home Security and Fire Safety
  • Contact an iron contractor to have quick-release devices installed on security bars in your home.
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