Fire Prevention & Safety

The effects of a fire can be devastating! The Department of Fire and Rescue understands the best way to fight fires and reduce injuries is by preventing them in the first place. Oftentimes many unintentional fires could have been prevented by following some basic fire safety tips. By educating yourself on potential fire hazards in your home, you can take the first step to protecting your family from a destructive fire. You can also protect yourself by installing working smoke alarms and other fire safety devices.

Fire Causes


Candles may look pretty but they can quickly become the cause of a fire. The open flame can make it very easy to ignite materials around it. Follow these safety tips when using candles. English | Video


Frying, baking, and grilling are great ways to cook up a good meal but there are also fire hazards around the kitchen. As you prep your next meal, stir up these safety tips.

English (PDF) | Additional Languages | Video | Grilling (PDF) | Microwave (PDF)


The use of electricity has become second nature but that doesn't make it any less dangerous. Practice electrical safety so a fire doesn't fire shock you.

English (PDF) | Video | Additional Languages

Heating equipment is the leading cause of home fires in December, January, and February. Put a Freeze on Winter Fires and ensure your heating equipment is being used and maintained properly.

Additional Languages (PDF) | Wood / Pellet Stoves (PDF) | Video

Holiday Safety
Holidays are a great time to get together with friends and family to celebrate. Keep your family fire safe during these special occasions.

Fireworks (PDF) | Halloween (PDF) | Thanksgiving (PDF) | Turkey Fryers (PDF) | Winter Holidays (PDF) | Christmas Trees (PDF)

Clothes Dryers
Many of us use laundry dryers every day but if they are not maintained properly they could be a fire hazard. Details..

Mulch Fires
The risk of a mulch fire is more common than one might expect. They are especially dangerous due to the proximity to homes and buildings. The Virginia Department of Forestry recommends following certain guidelines to reduce the risk of a mulch fire occurring. Brochure

Portable Generators
Heavy storms and downed utility lines can cause power outages in your home. Many people utilizing generators to avoid getting caught in the dark. Generators can be a good tool if used properly. Follow these generator safety tips. English (PDF)

Open Burning
Find information regarding guidelines for open burning in Loudoun County.

Portable Fire Pits
Portable fire pits and chimneys are simple ways to bring a campfire into an urban environment but the open flame from the fire is still dangerous. If you choose to use a portable fire pit or chimney follow all manufacturer's instructions for safety. Here are a few fire safety tips.

Smoking Materials
Smoking is the number one cause of fire death throughout the United States. Many things in and around the home can catch on fire is it touches something hot like a cigarette or ashes. You can prevent fires caused by cigarettes and other smoking materials. Follow these tips (PDF) from the United States Fire Administration.

Youth Firesetting

Children playing with fire causes hundreds of fires each year while plating with matches of a lighter. Protect your child by teaching them about fire safety. Details.

Fire Safety & Devices

Smoke Alarms
When there is a fire, smoke spreads quickly. Working smoke alarms give an early warning in the event of a fire giving you extra time to exit safely. English (PDF) | Spanish (PDF) | Video

Escape Planning
A small fire can turn into a large fire in a matter of minutes. By creating an escape plan, your family will know what to do if there's a fire in your home. Follow these guidelines when creating your home escape plan. English (PDF) | Additional Languages

Fire Extinguishers
Fire extinguishers can be very helpful when containing a small fire before the fire department arrives but before you jump into action it is important to understand their limitations.

Home Fire Sprinklers
Over 80% of fire deaths occur in the home. Residential sprinklers save lives by keeping the fire small, allowing the occupants additional time to safety exit the home. Learn more about the benefits of residential sprinklers (PDF). You can also check out the Home Fire Sprinkler Coalition website for additional information.

Carbon Monoxide

Carbon monoxide (CO) is a colorless, odorless gas that can be poisonous if inhaled. Identify the sources of CO in your home and take the necessary precautions to protect yourself. Spanish (PDF)

*Information and safety sheets shared with the permission of the U.S. Fire Administration and the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA).

Life Safety

Child Safety Seats

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reports that nearly 73% of all child restraints are misused, needlessly exposing children to an increased risk of injury or death. Child restraint devices are required for children through the age of seven, up until their eighth birthday. Details about Virginia's Child Restraint Device Law are online from the Virginia Department of Health. You may also view Virginia's Child Passenger Safety Laws to learn more about this important topic.

Emergency Preparedness

Planning for any emergency requires considering all likely scenarios that could result when things that you rely on daily - like electricity, water, heat, air conditioning, telephone service, and transportation - are disrupted or lost for a considerable amount of time. Loudoun County's Office of Emergency Management encourages residents to create their own emergency preparedness plan. Visit the Ready Nova website to learn what you can do to be prepared.

More Information

Contact the Fire Marshal's Office for more information.