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October 2023: Fire Prevention Month

WHEREAS, last year, the State Fire Marshal's Office and MI Prevention, a statewide community risk reduction program, reported 132 Michigan residents were killed in 113 residential fires and that fire departments throughout Michigan responded to 14,509 home fires in 2022; and,

WHEREAS, today's fires grow quickly and produce extreme heat and deadly smoke that limits the time occupants have to escape a residential house fire to two minutes before they are overcome by the toxic smoke, lack of oxygen, and unable to escape; and,

WHEREAS, careless smoking has been identified as the leading cause of fatal fires in Michigan accounting for 51% of fatal fire victims; and

WHEREAS, in Michigan, careless smoking was reported as the cause in 100% of the fatal fires where the victim was on home oxygen,

WHEREAS, 67% of the residential fatal fires in Michigan were reported as not having working smoke alarms at the time of the fire; and,

WHEREAS, 61% of the fire deaths in Michigan happen between 6 pm and 6 am, with those fatal fires most often starting in the living room or bedroom; and,

WHEREAS, the best option for escaping a residential fire is to have a home fire escape plan where every family member is prepared to react quickly and calmly in a real fire situation by establishing two routes out of every room to exit the home within two minutes or less; and,

WHEREAS, the best home fire survival tip is to close all doors between you and the toxic smoke and fire to add minutes to your escape plan; and,

WHEREAS, by practicing a home fire escape plan at least twice a year that includes a home fire drill during the day, a home fire drill in the dark at night, and closing a bedroom door prior to opening a window to escape, you can increase your chances of surviving a home fire; and,

WHEREAS, having working smoke alarms in every bedroom and outside sleeping areas on each level of your home, working carbon monoxide detectors on each level, and closing bedroom doors when sleeping can cut a family's risk of dying in a home fire in half; and,

WHEREAS, MI Prevention, Michigan's fire departments, and partnering organizations are dedicated to reducing the occurrence of home fires and home fire injuries through fire prevention education, so residents can take personal steps to decrease the chance of a residential fire and be true heroes in protecting their homes and families; and,

WHEREAS, MI Prevention, Michigan’s fire departments, and partnering organizations are dedicated to improving Michigan’s resident’s chance of escaping a home fire by installing 46,068 smoke alarms in 14,933 Michigan homes since 2018.

NOW, THEREFORE, I, Gretchen Whitmer, governor of Michigan, do hereby proclaim October 2023 as Fire Prevention Month in Michigan.