Preventing and preparing for fires
Be prepared for fires. (It will be harder to reach fire-fighters; they might have other priorities and not show; they might not have water pressure at the hydrants; and also insurance companies will probably not be much help after a grid crisis.)
1. Because of increased dangers, it’s more even more important to have working smoke detectors and fire extinguishers installed close to potential sources of fire. Also have boxes of baking soda close to where you might have grease fires.
2. If the grid does collapse, as extra insurance, consider placing a plastic trashcan on an upper floor, filled with water, with the lid and a bucket on top.
3. Stress fire safety and situational awareness with members of your family. There must be absolutely no untended candles or fires. Teach everyone in your household the basic principles of putting out each kind of fire, and the right kind of extinguisher to use.
4. Work out evacuation plans. How will you get out of upper floors? Who is responsible for young children? Who will grab what vital equipment on the way out (if possible)? Where will you regroup?
5. As mentioned earlier, there should not be flammable liquids in the house, with the exception of the small amount to be used in the near future.
6. If an EMP occurs, small transformers that are on poles near homes may overload and catch fire. The cooling oil in the transformers rarely ignites, so usually only a small amount of insulation burns before the fire goes out. However if the transformers are among trees and it’s been dry, there’s a danger of the fire spreading. Be ready to put it out.
7. As part of organizing with neighbors, organize a mutual fire-protection plan.