In a 40 foot RV you have 20 seconds to get out alive. For every foot less than that subtract a second. Isn't much time is it? We have a 37 foot RV so that means we have approximately 17 seconds for 2 adults an a 8 month old baby to get out alive. For me that really hit home. Your fire detectors and possibly your carbon monoxide detectors are the wrong kind for an RV and you probably don't have enough of them. For our 37 foot RV we should have 3. One at each end and in the middle. The smoke detector that you have in your RV probably doesn't detect fast flash fires and slow smoldering fires which include electrically energized fires. Needless to say we have purchased the smoke detectors and will be installing them as soon as they arrive.
He also spoke about having enough fire extinguishers. I have never used one and during the seminar was given the opportunity to. You should every month turn your fire extinguisher over and hit it with a rubber mallet, nope didn't know that either. Your main fire extinguisher in your RV should be an A,B,C. You should also have at least 4 others and he recommended the foam kind that are A,B. They are ok for the environment and he actually licked some off of his arm. When he used this foam the fire couldn't restart. It was so interesting. He mentioned that when you only have 20 seconds to get out you will want to possibly use this foam on yourself to lesson the impact the fire has on you. Needless to say we now have 3 of the foam fire extinguishers that we have purchased as well.
He also mentioned that you should be running your fire safety twice a year and actually using your fire escapes during that time. We are going to be running ours on Wednesday. There are several types of windows on the RV's and you will have to decide what kind you have. Ours pushes out and we have a dowel rod that we will be using at each window to keep it open so we can escape. To run your drill he recommended that you put a picnic table underneath the window you will be using to practice on, but know that during a real fire you won't have that luxury. A broken bone however, is always better than the alternative. Time yourself during the drill and whenever you have guests make sure they are aware of all of the exits and how to use them. If you have older children they can also help in assisting getting the others out. I can't stress enough the importance of running these drills. If the real thing ever happens you and your family will know exactly what to do.
How many of us run our propane while we are going down the road to keep our fridge cold? Well I can tell you we will not be doing this any longer. If a tire blows out it can damage the propane line under your RV. It is only a matter of time until it catches fire. He said as long as you are not opening your fridge it should be ok. He recommended putting in a fan to circulate the air.
The Diesel Pushers have the most fires than any other vehicle followed by Gas. Fifth Wheels and Travel Trailers are last. I can tell you that really changed my mind on what our next RV will be.
We have put the ladder at the back of our RV where our son's room is along with a hammer (the kind you would use to break your window in your vehicle). If we can't get to him from inside the plan is for Tim to go first, go around back to Garrett's room, use the hammer to break the window grab Garrett give him to me and get out. We have 17 seconds to do this in, I'm sure we will have to practice several times but in my opinion it will be worth it if we all get out alive.
Now with this being said I also believe you shouldn't live your life in fear. But that knowledge is power. So please run your family drills twice a year for the just in case and teach your children what to do in case of a fire.