At any rate, fire prevention shouldn't be taken lightly. Just tune in to any local news channel, and see how destructive fire incidents can be. Not only can it take away millions of pesos worth of possessions, but it can even take away lives.
So, to kick off the month and keep you safe, we advise you to:
Check Your Electrical Connections Regularly
Left unchecked, a loose or faulty electrical connection can lead to fires. Stay alert for any odd behavior from your appliances, and have them checked by a professional (unless you're fully capable of fixing the problem on your own). This way, you'll know whether to leave those appliances alone, have them patched up, or replace them altogether. For more information on checking electrical appliances, read this The Telegraph article.
Install Sprinkler Systems in Your Home
Of course, it's impractical to stay in all day just to prevent fire hazards. When you're away from home and something happens, you need some form of back-up, like a sprinkler system. Put them up in places most likely to catch fire, like the kitchen area and the bedroom. Ask around for the best sprinkler system brands, or purchase a home that has a built-in sprinkler system to begin with.
Keep Flammables Away From Children/Pets
The last thing you want is for otherwise innocent members of your household to cause potentially fatal accidents. Store matches, candles and the like in a high cabinet. Toilet-train your pets, so they don't answer the call of nature on top of an open socket. If your kids can't help but be curious about flammables, teach them how to handle those.
Dispose of Flammables Properly
Separate used batteries from the rest of the garbage. Make sure your cigarette stubs are completely put out before tossing them into the trash. Do the same for used matches, candles and anything else that needs to be burned. Avoid leaving out your flammable garbage in places where they can do harm to others.
Keep Emergency Hotlines Ready
This way, you can contact the local authorities immediately in case there's a fire. For example, if you live in Makati City, you can call the fire station at (02) 818-5150 or (02) 816-2553. You may also pay them a visit at the 2/F Makati Central Fire Station, Ayala Avenue Extension cor. Malugay St., Makati City. Alternatively, you may contact the Makati Police Station (887-2484 or 843-5877), Makati Youth Center Head Quarters Makati Rescue (899-8928, 896-2828 or 895-8243) or the local hospital of your choice.
Invest in a Fire Extinguisher
Have at least one of these in your home. Place it in an area where you can easily reach for it in case of emergencies, such as exits. Be sure to read the instructions pasted on the side of the fire extinguisher before using it for maximum effect.
Also, bear in mind that fire extinguishers come in different grades, according to what type of fires they can put out. Ask your local supplier for more details before purchasing. Decide whether you want a small, medium-sized or large extinguisher. In general, the larger, the better.
Know First Aid for Burns
As you know, burns can be extremely painful, and lead to infection if left untreated. For first-degree or minor burns, find a source of cool (but not cold) running water, and run it over the affected area for 10 to 15 minutes. You may also apply topical treatments (not toothpaste!) to relieve pain.
For more serious burns, remove any pieces of clothing, jewelry and other restricting items near the affected area, as burns swell fast. Avoid dousing the area with water; instead, keep it elevated, and watch for signs of circulation. If you know CPR, you can administer it on the patient. Meanwhile, call for emergency help as soon as possible.
Keep Your Home Clean and Organized
The cleaner your home is, the less likely it can catch fire. Wash/dispose of dirty rags that can aggravate any kitchen fires. Avoid "octopus" connections, which can overload and explode. Keep anything that can catch fire away from anything that can cause it (e.g. papers away from stoves).
As Mad-Eye Moody from the Harry Potter series would say, the key to safety is "Constant Vigilance!" Know how your electrical appliances work, use and dispose of flammables carefully, and train your family on what to do in case of fire. If you do this, not only will you enjoy your summer months to the fullest, but you can prevent you and your loved ones from becoming yet another tragic statistic.