Rockland County Executive Ed Day and County Health Commissioner Dr. Patricia Schnabel Ruppert educate residents to plan and practice a fire escape route in your home. Having a plan can mean the difference between a safe escape and a tragedy. While children under five and adults over 65 are at the highest risk for injury or death in a fire, people of all ages are at risk.

Every year, the National Fire Protection Association has a theme for fire prevention week. This year’s theme, “Not Every Hero Wears a Cape. Plan and Practice Your Escape!”, is to develop a fire escape plan for your home and practice it. A plan can help the whole family learn what to do in case there is a fire. It’s too late to start making a plan if a home fire occurs.

During Fire Prevention Week, a public information table will be located on the first floor of the Allison-Parris County Office Building at 11 New Hempstead Road in New City. Information about smoke alarms, carbon monoxide (CO) alarms, fire prevention, and fire escape planning will be available.

Professionals from the Office of Fire and Emergency Services will host a training for the public from 10:00 AM – 2:00 PM on Friday, October 11, 2019, in the front parking lot of the Allison-Parris County Office Building, 11 New Hempstead Road, New City, on how to operate a fire extinguisher, when to use one and the different types of fire extinguishers. (Each training takes approximately 20 minutes.)

Healthy Neighborhoods Program (HNP) staff will be available during the training to answer questions about fire safety and offer free home visits to identify and discuss health and safety issues in the home for eligible residents including low-income residents, seniors and at-risk families. HNP can provide and INSTALL free smoke alarms, as supplies last, to help address these issues. A brief home survey is required at the time of the visit. For more information, call the Healthy Neighborhoods Program at 845-364-3290 or 845-364-3292 or visit

It is important to create a home escape plan with all members of your household. Here are some tips for your home escape plan:

  • Map it Out: Draw a map of the layout of your home and include two exits from every room (typically a door and a window) that lead to outside.
  • Meeting Place: Choose a place to meet your whole family outside the home that is a safe distance from your house.
  • Smoke Alarms: Mark on your map the location of all smoke alarms in your home. There should be at least one on every level, in each bedroom, and near all sleeping areas.
  • 911: Make sure everyone in your family knows how to call 911 or the local emergency number from a mobile phone or neighbor’s phone once they are safely outside.

“In support of Fire Prevention Week, we encourage all households to follow these steps. In a typical home fire, you may have as little as one to two minutes to escape safely from the time the smoke alarm sounds. Having a developed fire escape plan that is regularly practiced, can help you make the most of the minutes you have, giving everyone enough time to get out,” said Dr. Ruppert.

To learn more about this year’s Fire Prevention Week campaign, visit

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