This past week has been named Fire Prevention Week 2009. The week long observance of fire safety was established to commemorate the Great Chicago Fire of 1871 when over 250 people died. My children’s school sent home a lot of good information about keeping children safe from fires. The local fire department also visited their school to reinforce the fire safety theme. Some topics the fire department shared with the kids were: stop, drop and roll, stay away from the charcoal grill when your parents are cooking, practice a fire drill with your family and never play with matches or lighters. It is also a good time to make sure your house has a properly charged fire extinguisher. Another good idea is to change the batteries at least once a year in your smoke alarms and carbon monoxide alarms. I usually change the batteries in our alarms each year in the fall when the time changes. One last idea, if you use an electric heater, it is a good idea to keep it at least 3 feet from anything flammable.