As a parent, your child’s safety is your top priority. And with the United States’ strict guidelines regarding children’s bedding, pajamas, and fire safety, you may be wondering: How does The Safety Sleeper® address fire safety?
Quite well, we’re happy to report—and we’ll explain in this article!
The Safety Sleeper® And Fire Safety
Fire safety has been one of our highest concerns since the earliest days of our company. In fact, it’s tied into our company philosophy and the materials we use.
Safety Is Our Priority
The Safety Sleeper® was designed for children with special needs, especially children with any diagnosis that can negatively impact sleep or a healthy night-time sleep schedule.
These diagnoses can include Autism Spectrum Disorder, Angelman Syndrome, and Smith-Magenis Syndrome, which may make children more likely to leave their bed or room at night for the kitchen, the outdoors, or other areas where they could potentially harm themselves or others.
In one horror story we heard from a family that now uses The Safety Sleeper®, the parents rushed downstairs at 3:00 AM when the smoke alarm activated—to find their child microwaving silverware and “playing house.” Luckily, the parents arrived in time to prevent a deadly disaster!
In addition, children with special needs sometimes lack the cognitive ability to assess and avoid dangerous situations. The enclosed design of The Safety Sleeper® keeps them safely in bed (hence the name!), where they’ll be protected from a variety of potential household hazards—including hazards that could start dangerous house fires.
Safety In Our Materials
The Safety Sleeper® is made from fire retardant materials that meet the standards set by the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), and our fabric and mesh have undergone smolder testing by an accredited third-party lab to ensure your loved one’s safety. During the test, a lit cigarette was placed within a fold of The Safety Sleeper® fabric. Despite the heat from the cigarette, the fabric was completely undamaged outside of the area where the cigarette made contact—and the cigarette burned until it reached its own filter.
In the event of a house fire, The Safety Sleeper® will initially resist flames, giving you and your loved one time to escape the house without fear of the bed catching on fire.
While The Safety Sleeper® is extremely durable, we’ve also insisted on ensuring our fabrics are medical grade to meet the needs of children who have special medical concerns. At the same time, our fabrics have been tested for hazardous chemical exposure and are compliant with both the U.S. standard Proposition 65 and the European standard REACH (Registration, Evaluation, Authorization and Restriction of Chemicals).
Enhancing Fire Safety Throughout Your Home
Although The Safety Sleeper® is designed with fire safety in mind, you should still use fire safety best practices throughout your home. Some of the best strategies you can employ:
1. Check that you have working smoke detectors throughout the house. The National Fire Protection Association recommends installing at least one smoke detector on every level of your house, with additional smoke detectors installed inside every bedroom and outside of each sleeping area, such as a hallway lined with bedrooms.
In a two-story home with a basement and two bedrooms, you should have six smoke detectors: one for each level, one in each bedroom, and one outside of the bedrooms.
For maintenance, test your smoke detectors at least once a month. While testing, check whether the batteries should be replaced. You may need to replace batteries once or twice a year.
2. Sleep with your bedroom doors closed (and always check the door knobs). Remember: “Close before you Doze!” Sleeping with your bedroom door closed can help prevent the spread of flames and smoke in the event of a fire—potentially giving your family members extra time to escape. As a rule, you’ll have 17 minutes to escape when the bedroom door is closed versus only three minutes when the door is open! In addition, if you’re in a room with the door closed, you may experience temperatures up to 100°F. But with the door open, temperatures could soar to 1000°F!
If a fire does break out, always lightly touch the door knobs before entering a room. A door knob will transfer heat in the event of a nearby fire, and touching the doorknob could alert you to a fire in a nearby room or hallway.
3. Keep working fire extinguishers throughout the home. Although having a fire extinguisher in the kitchen is a good start, consider installing more throughout your home.
The NFPA recommends installing at least one 2-A:10-B:C rated extinguisher on every level of your home, with one available every 40 feet. In other words, if your home is more than 40 feet wide, you should have at least two extinguishers on every floor of the home.
Check your fire extinguisher tags for the expiration date. In general, you should plan to replace your fire extinguishers every 10-12 years, especially if they are non-rechargeable. If you have a rechargeable fire extinguisher, you can take it to a fire extinguisher equipment service company for an inspection and a recharge.
As a rule, you should have your fire extinguisher inspected at least once a year to ensure it’s in good working order. Plan on having it checked even more if you store it in an area where it’s more likely to collect rust.
In addition, familiarize yourself with how to use your fire extinguishers. Although fire extinguishers vary by design, most can be operated using the PASS method:
- Pull the pin.
- Aim at the base of the fire.
- Squeeze the handle.
- Sweep the spray side-to-side along the base of the fire.
4. Have an escape plan. Today’s modern homes burn much faster than homes from 50 years ago. In fact, if your house catches on fire today, you may only have three minutes to evacuate—which is why having an extinguisher on every floor is so important!
This Fire Safety Research Institute video reviews some of the most critical fire facts, such as the importance of keeping doors closed at night and why you may have less than three minutes to evacuate in the event of a fire.
If your family sleeps on the second floor, you may also consider keeping a window ladder in each bedroom. These window ladders quickly attach to your window sill and allow you and your family members to climb down to safety without walking through your burning home.
Your local fire department can help you determine the best route out of your home in the event of a fire, and they can also conduct a safety check to determine how many fire risks are present.
When developing your escape plan, consider your child’s mobility. If your child can walk but moves slowly, keep a large, thick blanket nearby to cover them as you guide or carry them out of the home. The blanket will provide a layer of insulation from dangerous smoke and gas, as well as help retain a small amount of fresh air for them to breathe.
If your child isn’t mobile or is too heavy to carry, consider the alternatives. Keep a wheelchair or stroller nearby to quickly move them through the home. Again, your local fire department can help you determine the best exit plan for you and your child, especially if you have to navigate a hard-to-carry child up or down stairs!
If your child uses monitors, oxygen, or feeding tubes throughout the night, consider which elements are most important to take with you in the event of a fire. Be prepared to quickly disconnect the equipment and transport the essentials with your child.
5. Let emergency personnel know where your kids are. When talking to your fire department about an escape plan, you can also let them know how many kids live in your home and where their bedrooms are. In some cases, your local police department or emergency personnel may have packets you can fill out about children with special needs in your home.
In addition, you can place child-finder fire rescue decals on your children’s bedroom windows so rescue workers can quickly identify where your children are located inside the home.
6. Run practice drills. Your entire family should run fire drills at least once a year. This will help your family members remember what everyone should do in the event of a fire, and it will also allow you to adjust your plan as your child matures.
If your child needs to be carried or pushed in a stroller in the event of a fire, running regular practice drills will allow you to adjust your strategy as needed, especially as your child continues to grow.
These drills are also the perfect opportunity to test how you can best escape the home while carrying any necessary medical equipment for your child.
Learn More About The Safety Sleeper®
If you’d like to learn more about The Safety Sleeper® to ensure it’s the right choice for you and your child, sort through our range of customizable fully enclosed safety beds.