Job Instruction Training


Use the following format to cite this article:

Job instruction training. (2014) Farm and Ranch eXtension in Safety and Health (FReSH) Community of Practice. Retrieved from http://articles.extension.org/pages/70638/job-instruction-training.

 

Safety training is important in all workplaces, and production agriculture is no different. Think about all the equipment, processes, and tasks that workers complete daily on farms and ranches across the country. Farm and ranch managers may make assumptions that workers know how to do certain jobs, but those assumptions can be wrong. As a farm or ranch manager, you are responsible for ensuring that each worker understands how to safely complete the jobs he or she must do.

Job instruction training (JIT) is a systematic, fast, and effective method for teaching your workers to do a job correctly and safely. This method of training workers through a simple breakdown of steps is easy to understand and complete. By providing such training for your workers, you could reduce the risk of an injury or death to a worker, prevent costly equipment repairs, or avoid lost work time.

JIT Planning

When planning to conduct JIT, you must choose an effective trainer, identify an appropriate location and time for the training, and determine what information to convey to the workers. A JIT trainer should be familiar with all aspects of the job and should be a safe worker. Also, a good trainer is patient and has the desire and ability to teach the necessary skills. To enhance learning, provide the training in a realistic setting, using real tools and equipment. If you are training multiple groups, ensure that the training is the same for all workers. Provide ample time in the training for the trainer to present the information and for workers to demonstrate the job and ask questions. When possible, plan to hold training sessions during a slow time of the year at your farm or ranch to allow appropriate time for instruction and interaction. Use JIT to convey to workers any new information, techniques, or processes.

Steps of the JIT Method

When conducting JIT, the trainer uses the following four steps:

  1. Preparation: Provide a positive learning atmosphere for the workers by putting them at ease, evaluating what they already know, and reiterating the importance of job safety. Treat the workers as peers.  
  2. Presentation: List and demonstrate individually each step, stressing key points, while the workers observe. Provide an opportunity for the workers to interact by asking questions. 
  3. Performance: Give the workers the opportunity to complete the steps of the process while they explain the key points. If workers cannot explain the key points, they have not internalized the instructions and explanations. They do not thoroughly understand the job and are likely to perform it incorrectly or unsafely. Repeat this step until the workers successfully explain and complete the task. 
  4. Follow-up: Monitor the workers’ performances as they complete the steps, and correct their actions before they become habits. Provide workers a means for follow-up by designating a contact person for assistance, and encourage them to ask questions as needed after completing the training.

Click the image below to view the JIT method in action.

 

FileQVKbNFZDnZo

Benefits of the JIT Method

A main advantage of the JIT method is that training is practical and realistic because work tasks are demonstrated in real-life settings that encourage personalized, hands-on learning. By using personalized training, you will be able to motivate your workers more easily and focus on areas of improvement or need specific to your farm or ranch. Be sure to evaluate the training session to determine whether the workers clearly understood the content and whether you should address additional areas in the future.

Resources

For information related to JIT, click here to read an article about job safety analysis.

 

Use the following format to cite this article:

Job instruction training. (2014) Farm and Ranch eXtension in Safety and Health (FReSH) Community of Practice. Retrieved from http://articles.extension.org/pages/70638/job-instruction-training.

 

Sources

Kelly, M. (2002) Job instruction training: A checklist. Retrieved from http://migashco.com/cambrian/JIT.html.

 

Reviewers, Contributors, and Summarized by:
Linda M. Fetzer, Pennsylvania State University–lmf8@psu.edu
Willard Downs, University of Missouri–willard@missouri.edu
Dennis J. Murphy, Pennsylvania State University – (Has since retired)
Aaron M. Yoder, University of Nebraska Medical Center–aaron.yoder@unmc.edu

Cultivate Safety

Cultivate Safety Logo

(Photo Source: National Children’s Center for Rural and Agricultural Health and Safety)

Family farms and farm workers from multiple generations are common in production agriculture. Involving children in work activities teaches them valuable skills and makes them feel included in the family business. However, work activities can also expose children to hazards and risks if they are completing tasks that are not appropriate for their age. In the United States, about 38 children are injured in farm-related incidents each day, and every three days a child dies as a result of a farm accident.

The National Children’s Center for Rural and Agricultural Health and Safety (NCCRAHS) developed a website to help parents remember that they are a “Parent First, Farmer Second.” The website provides user-friendly information about child development and age-appropriate work guidelines for farm tasks.

Click here to be directed to the Cultivate Safety website. In addition to information about child development and work guidelines, the website provides information on preventing injuries and real-life injury incidents. Interactive features provide users with opportunities to upload stories, videos, and photos about child injuries to encourage families to learn from one another.

 
Reviewed and Summarized by:
Linda M. Fetzer, Penn State University – lmf8@psu.edu
Dennis J. Murphy, Penn State University – djm13@psu.edu
Marsha A. Salzwedel, National Children’s Center for Rural and Agricultural Health and Safety – salzwedel.marsha@mcrf.mfldclin.edu
Aaron M. Yoder, University of Nebraska Medical Center – aaron.yoder@unmc.edu

 

Agricultural Safety and Health Mobile Apps

Chicken ROPS Run iOS & Android App

Mobile apps—computer applications that run on mobile devices such as smartphones—can be educational, fun, and easy-to-use, and they can help users improve agricultural safety and health. The number of safety and health mobile apps continues to grow in number and functionality. Below is a list of mobile apps that may be useful for agricultural safety and health:

Ag Safety & Health Apps

  • CSP Quiz Game Plus: These quiz games are designed to help industrial hygienists prepare for the Board of Certified Safety Professionals comprehensive exam.
  • Decibel 10th: This app turns an Apple mobile device into a sound meter.
  • FallClear LITE – Fall Arrest Clearance Calculators: This app provides fall arrest clearance calculators, tools for supervisors and workers trained in fall protection.
  • FarmPAD Mobile App: This app can be used to store farm records, equipment service logs, and spray records or to take notes and pictures.
  • Heat Safety Tool: The US Department of Labor, Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) released this app to enable workers and supervisors to calculate the heat index for their worksites and learn about protective measures to reduce the risk of heat-related illnesses.
  • Job Safety Analysis: This app was designed for business managers to increase efficiency through a Job Safety Analysis (JSA) or the Safe Work Method Statement.
  • Ladder Safety: The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health released this app to improve extension-ladder safety.
  • Safety Data Sheets: Database for material safety data sheets; enter a product name to find related MSD. (Android devices)
  • NIOSH Pocket Guide to Chemical Hazards for iPad: This app provides a source for general information about industrial hygiene.
  • Sound Meter: Easy to use sound meter that measures SPL (sound pressure level) in decibels (db). (Android devices)
  • Winter Survival Kit: If you are stranded in severe winter weather, this app can help you find your location, call 911, notify emergency contacts, and calculate how long you can keep a vehicle’s engine running to stay warm.
  • WorkSafeBC Safety Videos: This app offers access via a mobile device to more than 150 WorkSafeBC workplace safety videos.

Ag Education Apps

 

Safety in Agriculture for Youth

Safety in Agriculture for Youth (SAY) is a grant project funded by the US Department of Agriculture (USDA), National Institute of Food and Agriculture to develop a sustainable and accessible national clearinghouse for agricultural safety and health curriculum for youth. For the funding period of 2017 – 2021, the SAY Project now consists of three funded project that each focus on a different aspect of youth farm safety. The projects are housed at the University of Nebraska Medical Center, the Ohio State University and Purdue University and will respectively focus on the SAY National Clearinghouse Project (e.g., SAY Clearinghouse, curricula submission and review, and marketing), Youth Farm Safety Education and Certification (YFSEC) Instructor Training and YFSEC Youth Training.

***New Resources***

Teacher resource guides will assist instructors with integrating curricula hosted in the SAY Clearinghouse by providing teaching methods to instructors on preparing students with safety instruction. The following teacher resource guides are available:

Foundational Safety Related Technical Knowledge and Skills – Teacher Resource Guide: Grain Safety Example

Animal Systems Career Pathway Teacher Resource Guide – Right from the Start: Safety Awareness for Livestock Producers

Animal Systems Career Pathway Teacher Resource Guide – Positive Animal Handling (Stockmanship) on Dairy Farms

Power, Structural and Technical System Teacher Resource Guide

SAY National Clearinghouse

The SAY National Clearinghouse consists of two different types of educational products: formal curricula and other supporting resources and provides their alignment to Agriculture, Food, and Natural Resources (AFNR) Career Cluster Content Standards related to agricultural safety and health. Click on the link below to access the SAY National Clearinghouse:

         SAY National Clearinghouse

Each educational resource has a page that provides you with a description, type of resource, language (English and/or Spanish), website link to resource, and alignment chart to AFRN standards.

Learn how to use the SAY Clearinghouse through the following videos:

SAY Teacher Update 2017 – Segment 1:  https://youtu.be/M-x-89-zvtQ

SAY Teacher Update 2017 – Segment 2: https://youtu.be/VIxXN-C_5dQ

SAY Teacher Update 2017 – Segment 3: https://youtu.be/Bzj8RSWNKN4

SAY Teacher Update 2017 – Segment 4: https://youtu.be/6T-VJ-JH2mM

Submitting your Ag Safety and Health Curriculum

Click HERE to be directed to submission instructions and link to submit your curriculum through the Curriculum Alignment Submission Tool (CAST).

Belief Statements & Guiding Principles for Youth Working in Ag

The Safety in Agriculture for Youth (SAY) Project National Steering Committee developed a belief statements document regarding youth working in agriculture. The belief statements outline consensus-based beliefs and principles that promote safety and health for youth working in agriculture. Click HERE for more information.

Injury Risk Assessment for SAE

The injury risk assessment for supervised agricultural experience (SAE) was developed by Utah State University through the SAY Project. Click HERE to access all of the components of the risk assessment.

OSHA 10-Hour General Industry (Agriculture) Course

CareerSafe is now offering an online training course providing training for entry level workers and employers. Visit the SAY National Clearinghouse for more information about the online training course.

National Youth Farm and Ranch Safety Symposium

The National Youth Farm and Ranch Safety Symposium was held in October 2014 in Lexington, KY. Click HERE to learn more about the symposium and to view the presentations.

Connecting with SAY

How to get connected? To stay up-to-date on the SAY Project and its objectives, sign up for alerts by subscribing to the listserv at SAY-L-subscribe-request@lists.psu.edu. Follow SAY on Facebook (AgSafety4u) and Twitter (@AgSafety4u). If you have any feedback or suggestions, email Linda Fetzer at lmf8psu.edu.

Newsletters and Reports

Additional Resources

What is the SAY National Clearinghouse? Webinar and Slides

SAY Project Background

Webinar – SAY What? A New Look at Farm Safety Education (introductory overview of the SAY Project)

Powerpoint from Webinar on November 14, 2013

Summarized and reviewed by:
Linda M. Fetzer, Penn State University – lmf8@psu.edu

Davis E. Hill, Penn State University (has since retired)

Dennis J. Murphy, Penn State University (has since retired)

Job Safety Analysis

Ag Safety Instruction

Ag Safety Instruction

(Source: Penn State University Ag Safety & Health)

Use the following format to cite this article:

Job safety analysis. (2013) Farm and Ranch eXtension in Safety and Health (FReSH) Community of Practice. Retrieved from http://articles.extension.org/pages/69149/job-safety-analysis.

 

Every job has its hazards, but agricultural work consistently ranks as one of the most dangerous occupations. One of the most effective ways to improve workplace safety is to conduct a review of workplace hazards and the potential injuries that could result from the hazards. A job safety analysis (JSA), sometimes referred to as job hazard analysis (JHA), is a written protocol that identifies existing or potential hazards associated with each step or task within a particular job and integrates safety and health solutions to reduce exposure to those risks. 

An effective JSA:

  • identifies hazards, 
  • involves workers in the identification of potential risks related to their jobs, 
  • provides a basis for training workers in safe operating procedures, 
  • increases awareness of safety practices in the workplace, 
  • decreases the number of injury-related absences, and
  • lowers costs for workers’ compensation claims.

After a JSA is completed, it can be used as a training resource in two ways:

  • as a tool with new employees to review their jobs and provide information about mandatory safety practices
  • as a refresher on hazards and recommended safety considerations when completing infrequent or unfamiliar tasks

Ultimately, the final result of a JSA should be a safe, productive, and efficient work environment on the farm or ranch. A current, complete JSA will foster communication as well as improve worker safety and health.

Steps Involved in Developing a JSA

There are four basic steps in the JSA process:

  1. Selecting the job
  2. Breaking down the job into steps
  3. Identifying potential hazards
  4. Developing solutions and recommended actions

Step One: Selecting the Job

  • Develop a JSA for all jobs, but give priority to those jobs in which workers have been injured or have a greater risk of injury.
  • When a new job is introduced at your farm or ranch, complete a JSA and use the JSA document to train your workers on safe operating procedures for the job.

Step Two: Break Down the Job into Steps

  • Break the job into discrete steps or tasks.

    • At this point, you are identifying what is done, not how it is done.
    • Include only four to nine steps in a job description, and make sure they are neither too detailed nor too general. If more than 10 steps are necessary to define a job, consider dividing the job into two segments, each with its own JSA.    
  • Identify the steps in a job in several ways:

    • Observe an experienced worker completing the job during a regularly scheduled time and at the usual location.
    • Ask workers to write the steps they take when completing the job. Make sure workers understand while developing a JSA that this process is not about their job performance but about determining the actions involved in completing a job. Consider workers’ suggestions for improving steps.
    • Consult multiple people familiar with a job to ensure that all steps are accounted for and listed in the correct sequence.
  • Begin the definition of each step with an action word and list steps in successive order.

Additionally, take note of the following:

  • unsafe shortcuts 
  • necessary equipment maintenance
  • the physical space where the job is completed

Step Three: Identify Potential Hazards

  • Identify hazards and any actions or conditions in each step of the job that could lead to an injury. It may be useful to use a hazard-inspection form as a tool to identify the potential hazards.
  • Evaluate and discuss each potential hazard, identifying the types of injuries that might occur. Be sure to include those hazards that have a low occurrence rate or are unlikely to happen. The following questions can help you identify potential hazards or problems associated with a job or steps in a job:

    • Is the worker at risk for a slip, trip, or fall?
    • Is the worker exposed to fumes or dust?
    • Does the equipment or machinery used pose any hazards? Are there missing shields or guards, exposed pinch points, possible crush points, or potential entanglement areas?
    • Do any of the hand or power tools pose any hazards? Does a tool have missing shields or guards, a frayed power cord, or cracked handles? Does the tool lack a ground fault interrupt?
    • Could a worker sustain an injury from lifting, pushing, or pulling?
    • Is the worker exposed to excessive noise or vibration?
    • Are there environmental issues, such as weather, that could affect the safeness of the job?
    • Are workers wearing the appropriate personal protective equipment (PPE) for the job?
    • Is there adequate lighting in the work space?

Step Four: Develop Solutions and Recommended Actions

  • Determine ways to eliminate, control, or minimize the identified hazards. Ideally, you should attempt to eliminate the hazard by modifying the process, changing the equipment, or improving the environmental conditions. If you cannot eliminate the hazard, look for solutions that control or minimize the workers’ exposure to the risk. These solutions may require the use of enclosures, guards, shields, or designated work areas.
  • Provide a recommended action for each step, and state specifically how the step should be completed. For example, you may phrase a step as follows: “When lifting a box from the floor to the counter, use your leg muscles to accomplish the lift.” Identify PPE, hand signals, and any additional safety recommendations, such as lockout procedures, for each step.

Evaluation and Follow-Up

  • Evaluate the effectiveness of the JSA after any injury or illness that occurs as a result of the execution of a job.
  • Review the causes of the injury or illness, and change the procedures or add safety measures as appropriate.
  • When you introduce new equipment, processes, or materials or make environmental changes, modify or update the JSA to reflect any changes.
  • Review all JSA changes with workers to ensure that everyone understands new procedures or preventative measures.

Final Recommendations

As you complete your JSA, pay close attention to the following details:

  • Be specific and carefully choose your words to describe each step thoroughly. Avoid using vague phrases, such as “be careful” or “use caution,” without specific guidance.
  • Investigate each job carefully to identify all potential hazards, especially those that you may consider less severe or that seem to have a low likelihood of occurring.
  • Fully describe the types and severity of hazards.
  • Align job steps and safety procedures so that each hazard or potential injury identified has a corresponding solution or mitigation strategy.

Sample JSA

You may find it helpful to review the completed JSA below—about hitching a tractor and a wagon—to better understand the JSA process.  

JSA Hitching

The following templates provide a starting point for developing a JSA:

  • Click here for Template #1 from Safe Manitoba.
  • Click here for Temple #2 from Penn State University.

Resources:

Job Hazard Analysis JHA Infographic
(Source: BLR – Safety Summit)
 

Use the following format to cite this article:

Job safety analysis. (2013) Farm and Ranch eXtension in Safety and Health (FReSH) Community of Practice. Retrieved from http://articles.extension.org/pages/69149/job-safety-analysis.

 

 

Sources

 

Job hazard analysis sample form. (n.d.) SAFE Work Workplace Safety and Health Division and Workers Compensation Board of Manitoba. Retrieved from http://safemanitoba.com/job_hazard_analysis_sample_form.aspx.

Job safety analysis. (2008). Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety. Retrieved from http://www.ccohs.ca/oshanswers/hsprograms/job-haz.html.

Murphy, D. (2008) Managing farm safety and health presentation at the Dairy Cattle Nutrition Workshop. Pennsylvania State University. Retrieved from http://www.das.psu.edu/research-extension/dairy/nutrition/pdf/murphy-managing-safety.pdf.

Sample written program for job safety analysis. (n.d.) Frankenmuth Insurance. Retrieved from http://www.fmins.com/pdf/safety_SERVICES/JobSafetyAnalysis.pdf.

 

Reviewers, Contributors, and Summarized by
Linda M. Fetzer, Pennsylvania State University – lmf8@psu.edu
Dennis J. Murphy, Pennsylvania State University – djm13@psu.edu
Cheryl Skjolaas, University of Wisconsin  skjolaas@wisc.edu
Chuck V. Schwab, Iowa State University  cvschwab@iastate.edu
Aaron M. Yoder, University of Nebraska Medical Center – aaron.yoder@unmc.edu

 

Integrating Safety into Agritourism

Agritourism Photo

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

 

 

 

(Photo Source: National Children’s Center for Rural & Agricultural Health and Safety)

Farm and ranch operations continue to diversify by adding activities such as corn mazes, hay rides, and product sales (farm markets, pick your own, etc.). Although these new enterprises create additional revenue for the farm or ranch, these ventures also have their own set of potential safety hazards. The National Children’s Center for Rural and Agricultural Health and Safety developed a comprehensive website that will assist farmers and ranchers with usable information to minimize the risk of injury on their operations.

Click HERE to be directed to the “Integrating Safety into Agritourism” website, which provides an overview of agritourism safety and health. It gives you the option to select specific types of “walkthroughs” based on your operation. The Walkthrough tab on the home screen allows you to click on 11 different  topics (animals, hand washing, machinery, etc.) that provide you with specific information about that topic. The walkthroughs use photos to contrast safety concerns and hazards with best practices and guidelines. Review questions and resource information accompany the photos.

Operating a business that involves working with the public can be challenging, and communication is highly essential when it comes to visitors to your farm or ranch. Many of these visitors will have little or no experience with agriculture, so it is important for you to minimize potential hazards and properly communicate information about hazards. Click HERE to be directed to a tutorial about communicating with your guests about hazards. The tutorial will assist you with the planning process and signage prior to and during your event.

The “Resource Section” of the website is a comprehensive list of resources divided into categories that will enable you to reduce the potential risk of injury through the use of proper planning, signage, policies, procedures, and health and safety guidelines. Click HERE to visit the resource page. It is divided into specific topic areas such as animal safety, corn maze safety, hayride safety, etc. Each topic area provides a checklist to use to “walk through” your operation and help you identify safety and health hazards. It also has resources you can use to address these hazards, including signage in both English and Spanish. All resources are free to download and use.

 

Reviewed and Summarized by:
Linda M. Fetzer, Pennsylvania State University – lmf8@psu.edu
Dennis J. Murphy, Pennsylvania State University – djm13@psu.edu
Marsha Salzwedel, National Children’s Center for Rural and Agricultural Safety and Health – salzwedel.marsha@mcrf.mfldclin.edu
Aaron M. Yoder, University of Nebraska Medical Center – aaron.yoder@unmc.edu
 

General Farm and Ranch Safety Video Resources

 

Topic Title Organization Resource Type

Enhancing a Farm’s Safety Culture, Productivity and Sustainability by using “On Farm Inspections” (2013)

3:19 minutes

Canadian Agricultural Safety Association Free – Online video via YouTube

Farm Safety Plan (2011)

2:49 minutes

English   French

Canadian Agricultural Safety Association Free – Online video via YouTube

Farm S.O.S. (Strategies on Safety) Curriculum Videos: A General Overview of Farm Hazards (2014)

1:39 minutes

Ohio State University Free – Online video via YouTube

Farm S.O.S. (Strategies on Safety) Curriculum Videos: Hazards of Clutter (2014)

1:13 minutes

Ohio State University Free – Online video via YouTube

Growing Safely – Farm Electrical Safety (2015)

5:36 minutes

 

Alliant Energy Fee – Online video via YouTube

Plan Farm Safety (2011)

15:25 minutes

English   French

Canadian Agricultural Safety Association

Addresses augers, tractor safety, ROPS, lockout/tag out, horizontal bunk silos, chemicals, and farm safety and health plans

Free – Online video via YouTube

SaskPower Farm Safety Video (2011)

4:52 minutes

SaskPower – Overhead power line safety Free – Online video via YouTube

Tornado Safety Tips (2011)

1:12 minutes

The Ohio State University Free – Online video via YouTube

 

Fires in the Home: Prevention and Preparedness


Use the following format to cite this article:

Fires in the home: Prevention and preparedness. (2012). Farm and Ranch eXtension in Safety and Health (FReSH) Community of Practice. Retrieved from http://www.extension.org/pages/63194/fires-in-the-home:-prevention-and-preparedness.

 

A fire can happen anywhere and at any time in a home. Fires and burns are the main causes of accidental injury deaths at home, with older adults and small children at the greatest risk. Careless smoking is the leading cause of accidental fires.

The recommendations in this article can help you reduce the risk of a home fire and prepare your family in the event of a fire. In addition to these recommendations, make sure that everyone in your house knows how to call 911 in the event of an emergency.

Smoke Detectors/Alarms

Smoke detectors are designed to detect fires and alert building occupants to the presence of smoke. According to the U.S. Fire Administration, the use of smoke detectors can reduce the risk of fire fatality by approximately 50%.

Smoke detectors are necessary on every level of a home and especially outside of sleeping areas. Maintain smoke detectors by testing them every month and changing the batteries twice a year. To help you remember to change the batteries regularly, make a habit of changing smoke detector batteries in the spring and fall when you change your clocks to adjust for daylight saving time. Residential guidelines for smoke detector installation and maintenance vary by state.

Fire Extinguishers

Multiple fire extinguishers should be located strategically throughout your home. Always keep an all-purpose ABC fire extinguisher (rated for ordinary combustibles, grease, and electrical fires) in your kitchen. Place the kitchen extinguisher in a location that is easy to reach in the event of a stove fire. Keep additional fire extinguishers in areas where fires are likely to start, such as the garage or near the furnace.

Fire Extinguisher

(Source: Pennsylvania State University. Agricultural Safety and Health)

Everyone in your household should know the location of fire extinguishers, and those family members who are capable should be trained in how to use them properly. To operate a fire extinguisher, remember the acronym PASS:

P – Pull the pin. Hold the extinguisher with the nozzle pointing away from you and release the locking mechanism.

A – Aim low. Point the nozzle of the extinguisher at the base of the fire.

S – Squeeze. Slowly and evenly squeeze the lever.

S – Sweep. Sweep the nozzle from side to side.

Fire extinguishers are affordable and can save lives and property. The most versatile type of extinguisher is a 10 lb., ABC extinguisher, which can be used on different types of fires. Each of the following types of fire extinguishers is designed to put out a specific type of fire.

Fires Extinguishers and Usage
Extinguisher Class Usage
Class A Fires of combustible materials such as clothing, wood, rubber, paper, and some plastics
Class B Fires involving flammable liquids, such as grease, gasoline, oil, and oil-based paints
Class C Fires that involve appliances, tools, or other types of equipment plugged into an electrical outlet
Class D Fires involving flammable metals; typically found in factories
Class K Fires involving vegetable oil, animal oils, or fats in cooking appliances; typically found in commercial kitchens, but the residential market continues to grow
Multipurpose   Different types as described in the categories above (for example, ABC or BC) 

Like smoke detectors, fire extinguishers require regular maintenance. You should shake dry chemical extinguishers monthly to prevent the powder from settling. Follow the manufacturer’s directions concerning pressure testing and replace a unit if it will not charge or is damaged.

View  the video below about fire extinguisher usage by the Fire Equipment Manufacturers’ Association.

Escape Routes and Plans

Before a fire occurs, develop an escape route with your family. An escape route should be planned for each area of the home and should include a designated family meeting area in an outside location away from the fire. Draw a map and practice the escape route so that every family member is familiar with the plan. Instruct family members to crawl underneath the smoke when escaping a fire and to “stop, drop, and roll” if their clothing is on fire.

If your home has multiple levels, purchase an escape ladder to provide safe exit from upper levels. All family members need to know the location of the escape ladder and be familiar with its use. Sleeping rooms should have two routes of escape, such as a door and a window. If a window is an exit route, make sure that the window opens properly. Once you and your family are out of the house, call 911 and do not go back into the house for any reason.

Resources

Click HERE to visit the U.S. Fire Administration website for information and resources to plan your home fire escape route.

Click HERE to be directed to a Fire Safety for Kids infographic provided by ContractQuotes.us.

 

Use the following format to cite this article:

Fires in the home: Prevention and preparedness. (2012). Farm and Ranch eXtension in Safety and Health (FReSH) Community of Practice. Retrieved from http://www.extension.org/pages/63194/fires-in-the-home:-prevention-and-preparedness.

 

Sources

Choosing and using fire extinguishers. (2015) U.S. Fire Administration. Retrieved from http://www.usfa.fema.gov/prevention/outreach/extinguishers.html.

Home fire escape planning outreach materials. (2014) U.S. Fire Administration. Retrieved from http://www.usfa.fema.gov/prevention/outreach/escape.html.

Keeping kids safe from fires. (2015) U.S. Fire Administration. Retrieved from http://www.usfa.fema.gov/prevention/outreach/children.html.

 

Reviewed and Summarized by:
Linda M. Fetzer, Pennsylvania State University – lmf8@psu.edu
Dave Hill, Pennsylvania State University (Has since retired)
Jimmy Maass, Virginia Farm Bureau (Has since retired)
Dennis J. Murphy, Pennsylvania State University (Has since retired)
Aaron M. Yoder, University of Nebraska Medical Center – aaron.yoder@unmc.edu