Nobody ever thinks that they're going to become a victim of a house fire. Unfortunately, house fires can happen at any time. Therefore, it's best to plan for the unexpected in every situation. Specifically, there are a few guidelines that you and everybody in your household should follow to stay as safe as possible in the event of a house fire.

DO Prepare for a Quick Escape

Start by understanding just how quickly a house fire can spread. You likely won't have time to grab a bunch of valuables and belongings, so plan for a quick escape. If you have poor eyesight or require a cane to get around, keep these items close to you at all times (especially before going to bed) so they'll be readily accessible in the event that you need to make a quick escape from your home.

DON'T Forget About Pets

The same goes for any pets you may have in the house. If possible, keep your dog's leash and/or pet carriers in the room where you sleep so that you can corral your pets (if safely possible) and get them out of the house with you. If you cannot locate your pet immediately in the event of a fire, be sure to let firefighters know how many pets you have in the house along with what they look like.

DO Buy an All-Purpose Extinguisher

House fires cannot always be put out using a handheld extinguisher, but you may be able to keep a small grease fire in your kitchen or other small fire from spreading if you act quickly enough. Just make sure that you have an ABC extinguisher on each floor of your home, especially near the kitchen. These extinguishers are designed to be used on a variety of different fires, including grease and electrical fires.

DON'T Forget to Designate a Meeting Place

Finally, make sure that everybody in your household knows where to meet in the event of a fire. Unfortunately, you may not all be able to communicate and get out together, especially if people sleep in separate rooms or on separate floors of the home. Therefore, having an agreed-upon meeting place can help take some of the stress and worry out of the situation. 

By keeping these fire safety tips in mind, you can have a better chance of keeping yourself and your loved ones safe in the event of a house fire.