What to do in a house fire

Fire and Emergency New Zealand

What to do in a house fire

If there's a fire in your house, you'll have around 3 minutes to get out before the fire becomes unsurvivable.

Here are the things you should do immediately:

  • If there are others in the house, shout 'FIRE, FIRE, FIRE!'
  • If there’s smoke, get on your hands and knees and crawl low and fast to escape smoke. The smoke will be hot and poisonous, and if you breathe it in, it can kill you. Remember: Get Down, Get Low, Get out.
  • If you can, close doors behind you to stop the fire spreading.
  • If you can't get out of the house, close the door of the room you're in and put a towel under it to stop the smoke coming in. Go to the window and yell 'FIRE, FIRE, FIRE!'. Wait for help.
  • If you can't open a window (if it has security stays, for example), consider using a chair or other furniture to break the glass. Use bedding to cover any remaining sharp pieces of glass to escape unharmed.
  • As soon as it's safe, call 111 immediately either from a mobile phone or a neighbour's house.
  • Meet at your agreed safe meeting place — somewhere safely away from the house. 

Once you're out of the house, stay out. Never go back inside.

Remember to let the arriving firefighters know whether you are all safety out or if there’s anyone missing. 

Make sure you have an escape plan so you know the fastest way to get out of your house in an emergency.