I love fall

The following post is by Jen Leary, Founder of Red Paw Emergency Relief Team

Pumpkin Spice LatteI love the fall; It’s my favorite time of year! Hoodies become appropriate to wear again, Starbucks Pumpkin Spice Lattes are back, football season begins, pumpkins are everywhere, and fall foliage! I could go on and on, but my favorite part of the fall is opening my windows after months of air conditioning and feeling the fresh fall breeze, and although open flames make me nervous:) I love the smell of properly maintained and supervised fireplaces- that are thoroughly extinguished and disposed of in an airtight, metal container, away from houses and anything flammable- coming through! As I’m writing this, it’s 12:30 in the morning and I’m awake (obviously), the windows are open (because it’s fall), and I’m listening to the chirp, chirp, chirp of a smoke alarm whose batteries need to be changed!! Anyone who knows me, knows this sound puts me on high alert! It’s coming from somewhere in the neighborhood, I just can’t figure out where, or else I’d be over there reminding them what the chirping means (and probably handing them fresh batteries!), not writing this blog!

That brings me to my other favorite thing about the fall, October, and Fire Safety Month! The time of year where Twitter blows up with #firesafetymonth hashtags and tips, fire departments open their doors for station tours and fall fire safety fairs, Red Paw Visitand just like the Twitter feeds, our email blows up with requests for presentations to schools, seminars, community events and demos. Everyone in the fire service and emergency response field doing what they can to get their fire safety message out and keep their communities safe and fire free in the coming months!

It’s a large undertaking, but we all have to do our part to keep our family, friends, pets and neighbors safe this season! I’m going to start by finding that chirping smoke alarm! Here are a few things you can do this fall to prepare your family & friends for fire season:

  • Discuss your family’s fire escape plan & practice with ALL members, including pets.
  • Be sure you have working smoke alarms on every floor of your home, including attics and basements.
  • Make sure your neighbors have working smoke alarms as well!
  • Replace old smoke alarms with new 10yr Lithium powered alarms.
  • Be sure to replace old extension cords, and make sure they aren’t running under rugs or furniture.
  • Clear pathways to exits.
  • Recycle old newspapers, magazines, and anything flammable that hasn’t been used since last season.
  • Have an electrician come out and check your wiring.
  • Have a professional come out to check your furnace.
  • Have your chimney cleaned before using it for the first time this season.

For more info about upcoming Fire Prevention Month events and more Fire Safety tips, check out our website:, follow us on Twitter: @RedPawRelief and follow hashtag:#firepreventionmonth.


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