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Are you ready if there is a fire?

post #1 of 25
Thread Starter 
The fire alarm in our building has been set off a few times this year (to the point where several people are thinking of moving). Only one of them was a fire and a small one at that, but today I was home by myself and carrying 4 cats down the stairs on a sprained ankle was not fun.

Do you have a 'plan' to get yourself and the cats out if there is an emergency?

I know where my cats hide when the alarm goes off (or any other noise), but my neighbour did not leave her apt as she was still looking for her cat (in fact a lot of people did not leave with their kids) and once again the fire marshall is annoyed that people don't have a plan to get out and just don't get out.
post #2 of 25
I have to be admit, we don't have a plan per se, but when we had a small fire a couple of months ago, we were able to quickly and efficiently round up our kitties and get the heck outta Dodge. It had been one of my biggest fears -- what would happen if we had a fire? -- and I'm pleased to say that J and I were both calm and rational, and that although Spike and Oz were both terrified, they came to us rather than go hide.
post #3 of 25
When we were in the apartment we had a plan, but now that we are in the house we don't. We should, especially with 4 cats and 2 kids....maybe I'll talk to DH tonight and work on it.
post #4 of 25
That reminded me. I must buy anouther cat carrier tomorrow!
I don`t think it would be too much of a problem here. Theres a good alarm system that`s checked every 6 months and we`re in the basement so pretty easy to get out but I only have 1 carrier!

Thanks for reminding me!
post #5 of 25
Nope We only have one cat carrier. I worry a lot about this since I don't drive. We also only have one carrier. I have leashes but I can't find their collars I hate living in an apartment cause you never know what can happen in the surrounding rooms.
post #6 of 25
Thread Starter 
For the sake of carrying them, we have two large travel carriers and put two in each. I wouldn't be able to carry 4 carriers at once and they won't let you back in the building.

For the sake of getting them out, I would rather they were a little squished than not get then out (although you have to make sure you get the right two together, Scully and Magnum would be a disaster and Bumper needs Magnum when scared)
post #7 of 25
Since I am moving back to my parents we are falling back to the old fire escape plan. I grab Duke, Mom grabs Sibohan, Dad grabs Kyra(dog) and we talke them all outside to my SUV and throw them in.
This whole plan is based on if we can't get to the carriers
post #8 of 25
Our last house caught on fire. We lived in a rural area where the fire department had to bring the water with them in a truck and it was a 15 minute wait. The house was wood and built in 1884 so it would have gone up like a tinderbox.

The thing that saved us was having fire extinquishers all over the house. Of course as DH frantically ran around grabbing them (they were in the kitchen, bedroom, garage, etc), the cats all went into deep hiding under the king sized bed and I couldn't get them out.

After I called 911 (and had to argue with them that I had family members to evacuate, as they wanted to keep me on the phone), I opened the door and shooed the dogs out (we had 3 at the time). I grabbed every cat I could grab and literally flung them out the door. I thought it better to find them later than have them die in a fire.

When a fire hits fast, there isn't time for carriers or leashes. As hard as it can be, remain calm or the cats will all hide. Buy fire extinquishers and place them everywhere in your home. It saved all of our lives that day.
post #9 of 25
According to my professor last semester, if the fire occurred during the night (while I'm sleeping) it'd be too late for us. We'd be dead because we sleep with the bedroom door open.
He works in the physical security industry and teaches at my school part time. We argued that logically wouldn't that give us a quick exit? He said that buy the time we woke up from the fire alarms the fire would already be in the rooms. The Fire Department has done enough studies on this.

Otherwise I guess our course of action is that I keep my car parked by the front door. So I guess worse case scenerio we throw the cats in there (providing we're awake). The cats rarely leave us alone.
post #10 of 25
Good thread!

I also live in an apartment. The closest fire extinguisher is in the hall...yea, good spot for it! My alarm has gone off (due to making sure things were burnt to a crisp one night for dinner!) but Precious didn't run and hide, she just perked her ears up and was "on alert".

I will be moving soon, so I think I'll be buying my own fire extinguisher to keep in my apartment. I also think it's a good idea to have my cat carrier and leash available.
post #11 of 25
I worry if there ever is a fire here. There is only one exit..and my bedroom is off the kitchen which is far from the only exit.

My bedroom window is tiny to jump out of too. I actually don't know if I would fit.

If I was in the livingroom and the fire was in the kitchen, I would be g2g though...as long as Trout listens to me when I call her
post #12 of 25
Having been through my home burning down 3 years ago, I know that I am ready for a fire.. We have a total of 10 smoke alarms inside the house and in the laundry area, garage and attic...as for the 8 animals, out into the back yard with the 6 foot fence at first, or into the car without carriers (not enough room for that many)....As for severe weather, I have a huge crate set up in my middle hallway where all 8 animals go into during these times, with me sitting next to it, and a big blanket to cover us all..
post #13 of 25
Hmmm you've got me thinking... We really need to keep one of our collapsible cardboard carriers by the door for Lily. The other 2, I could grab them and their leashes and sort them out outside, but Lily would need to be caught (but would probably be hiding behind the couch), and put in a carrier ASAP. She would freak out if she knew she was outside...

We have 2 exit routes downstairs, and if we couldn't go downstairs we could jump out a window, but with 3 cats it wouldn't be particularly safe...

We really need to get some fire extinguishers.
post #14 of 25
As someone who has gone through a housefire and lost every single one of my animals to the housefire, I can tell you that I definately have a plan now. I still feel guilty about losing the 3 cats and 5 dogs the first time so hopefully that will never happen to me again. There was nothing that I could do the first time since I barely got out, but I still feel guilty.
post #15 of 25
Hopefully. I do think about it, it's always been something I've been phobic about (I wouldn't even let my parents light birthday candles when I was little) but I think I'm okay.

I live within sight of a fire station, and have firewalls between apartments. In some ways you're better off in an apartment if there is a fire because a house doesn't have to have the same stuff between floors/units.

I would probably grab Zissou and her leash on the way out and put it on her once we were safe outside. If not possible, I'd stuff her in the carrier, smash out the window, lower her down by rope, and then wait for them to get me.
post #16 of 25
Wow, this makes me very greatfull we live in a single story home so i don't have to worry with stairs/jumping. If a fire does occur- I have quite a few carriers in the garage (and a large cage stored in the living room closet) so i can get to them if need be. There are windows in every room of the house except the guest bathroom....so if we need to get out and can't through a door we still have windows. Also- all of my kitties are leash trained, so that helps to. The foster kittens are always in carriers (if they're babies) or a cage- so i can grab them fairly easily. The dogs I would just try and throw a leash on them. Hopefully i could grab them all and toss them in my car and have enough time to get out. In a worst case scenario- if i only had a second to get out myself- i would try to gather them all together and put them outside of the window/door if i didn't have time to get them all in carriers/on their leashes. They all wear proper id and collars at all times (not to mention i work at the shelter in our area) so i'd rather have them out and alive than suffocate to death. (at least if they were out i could find them hopefully) i dunno though, i guess i need a better plan? Our tornado plan we have down pat- i take them ALL into the small guest bathroom and we all huddle together.

Also while we're on the topic of emergency planning- Memphis is overdue for an earthquake. I have NO CLUE what to do if one were to happen. What is the best thing to do during an earthquake? Do you stay inside and hide under sturdy furniture? or no? What about animals?
post #17 of 25
I've just had two new smoke alarms fitted several weeks ago. It's law now that all new houses have them wired into the mains as well as a 10 year battery back up. So *God forbid* the worse does happen, the girls are in my room with me, and their carriers are in the spare room with their harnesses under their blankets.
post #18 of 25
I'm a trained fire warden so I should have a plan- I think getting the cats out is the most important thing

GLad to see someone bringing up the thing about having the bedroom door open as the smoke will get you first
post #19 of 25
Blaze and Bandit are both outside,so I don't need to worry about them getting out.
I do however have to worry about the 4 kids getting out.They all have rather large windows in thier rooms.........so they could jump out those if need be.I have 3 smoke alarms.2 that are wired into the house and 1 that is a battery operated one.I have a fire extinguisher (sp) in the Kitchen.Shawn and I have ALWAYS agreed that if the kids don't get out, then we don't.I will stay with my kids.I have read so many things about parents getting out, but not the kids.SORRY not happening here.
The kids know that we are to go out to the road/well house area and wait there if we can't get out in the vehicles.
I live 15 mintues from a Fire Station too.
post #20 of 25
Thread Starter 
Originally Posted by silentNate View Post
GLad to see someone bringing up the thing about having the bedroom door open as the smoke will get you first
I am crazy about that, the cats will not allow doors to be closed, but after a house fire when I was young I know having that door closed saved my sister (her bedroom was closest to the fire)
post #21 of 25
Thread Starter 
I live right in the middle of a triangle between the police station, hospital and fire station all in a 5 min drive. The sirens drive me crazy half the time but they sure get here quickly when something happens
post #22 of 25
Here's my question: Is there a way to get your cats to come to you when they're scared instead of hiding? I know that is a major problem that children and pets hide when they're scared in a fire, and the firefighters can't find them in time.

When the tornado sirens go off, she doesn't hide, and I can grab her and pull her in the bathroom with me, and when I test the fire alarm same thing, but I don't know how she would react to real smoke.
post #23 of 25
Thread Starter 
Bumper and Scully run to their carriers when scared, Boomer and Magnum run under the sofa so it is not too big a deal for me to find them... I guess it is just a matter of knowing their hiding places as even if you train them they may not react the same when scared
post #24 of 25
Also while we're on the topic of emergency planning- Memphis is overdue for an earthquake. I have NO CLUE what to do if one were to happen. What is the best thing to do during an earthquake? Do you stay inside and hide under sturdy furniture? or no? What about animals?
I lived in Cali most of my life.

Stay inside, since outside powelines could be falling. Move away from windows. Also move away from walls that have lots of bric-a-brac that could fall and hit you. The safest spots are in doorways, under sturdy furniture, and in the tub. Kneel over and cover your neck with your hands. If you are in an earthquake zone, make sure your tall furniture (like a bookcase) is securely fastened to the wall.

Don't worry about the animals. They'll sense the earthquake coming way before you hear it. Likely, they'll hide under something too. It depends how big it is. During a small earthquake, Princess would just curl up on the bed. Before a big one hit, she'd be hissing at the air. By the time it came, she was already under the bed.
post #25 of 25
Originally Posted by sarahp View Post
We really need to get some fire extinguishers.
Buy one and place it next to your bed along with a flashlight. Do the same in the kitchen. And also good if there is one handy in any room where you have to work your way out of it in case of a fire. We own at least 5 (large ones, not those little whimpy ones)

Think about it. If a fire beaks out in the middle of the night, sometimes you have to go down a hallway to get to safety. If you have a fire extinguisher handy, you can blast out a path if need be.
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