Officials stress importance of fire evacuation plans after several mobile home fire deaths

Fire department truck lights
Photo: WKRN

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) — Six people have died in mobile home fires in Middle Tennessee in less than a week.

If you live in a mobile home, it’s imperative that your family has a fire evacuation plan.

Steve Newsome is a grandfather of 11 and his grandchildren often stay with him, so he felt like it was very important that they have a fire evacuation plan in case of a fire in his mobile home.

“You need an escape very, very quick,” he said.

In Newsome’s mobile home he has a front door and a back door, but fire investigators told News 2 a family fire escape plan should also include other ways to get out quick.

“We teach all the children to have two ways out. One would be the door. If the door is blocked, the other would be their window in their bedroom,” said Elizabeth Bednarcik, a fire inspector with the Gallatin Fire Department.

You should always keep a fire extinguisher near the kitchen.

Inspectors also say it is very important to check air filers at least once a month, if not every two weeks. The reason is because if debris piles up on the filters, it can catch fire.

Also check to make sure your smoke detector is working at least once a month.

Here in Tennessee, the state fire marshal’s office gives out free smoke detectors to anyone who needs them.

To create a fire evacuation plan you can go to the National Fire Protection Association website and download a grid to help you draw a map of your home. Talk about your plan with everyone in your home and practice your family’s fire escape drill.