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Miriam Barish
Miriam Barish
Attorney • (215) 790-4571

Lessons From The Recent Mennonite Farmhouse Fire

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Sadly this morning a farmhouse fire took the lives of seven precious children ranging in ages from 7 months to 11 years old. One 3 year old who was watching television at the time with her 2 year old sibling did escape and she ran to alert her mother who was milking the cows at the nearby barn.

I am mother and cannot begin to imagine the pain this family is experiencing from this devastating loss. Certainly it is every parent’s greatest fear to lose a child –let alone to lose seven children. Sadly we cannot reverse the events of earlier today, but we must think of ways to avoid a similar tragedy in the future.

This devastating loss is an important reminder that every family must have a fire safety plan. Parents must instill in their children a plan that they understand and they practice to ensure that if faced with a fire their kids will know what to do to safely escape. Here a few tips that children should know:

  • Don’t play with matches, lighters and candles
  • When the smoke alarm sounds, get out and stay out
  • In case of fire: DON’T HIDE, GO OUTSIDE! NEVER hide in closets or under beds when there is a fire.
  • To escape during a fire; Fall & Crawl. It is easier to breath in a fire if you stay low while getting out.
  • If your clothes are on fire; Stop, Drop, and Roll until the fire is out. Shout for help.
  • Choose a meeting place outside, such as a big tree or the end of the driveway, so you will know that everyone has gotten out safely.
  • NEVER go back into a burning building for any reason.
  • Know your local emergency number. Put stickers and magnets with emergency numbers on your refrigerator and every telephone in the house.