NFPA's 2013 Remembering When: A Fire and Fall Prevention Program for Older Adults conference will be held December 1-3 at the Marriott Long Wharf Hotel in Boston, Mass. NFPA will host representatives from up to 30 communities to attend the conference in Boston to learn how to reach older adults through group presentations and home visits. This will be the first group trained on the updated version of Remembering When that will be released in October.
Fire departments are asked to partner with an agency whose main outreach to older adults is through home visits. To be considered for a scholarship award to attend this conference, submit an application no later than August 30.
According to NFPA statistics, adults age 65 and older are twice as likely to be killed in a home fire compared to the general population, and falls are the leading cause of death from injuries to those in the same age group. NFPA hosts this conference annually as part of its ongoing effort to help reduce fires and falls among older adults.
The training session includes helpful tips to prevent fires such as recommending that older adults who smoke should do so outside and never in bed. It reminds smokers that deep, sturdy ashtrays should be used while smoking and cigarette butts and ashes should be placed in water or sand before disposal. And when it comes to home heating, older adults are advised to keep space heaters at least 3 feet (1 meter) from anything that can burn and unplugged when no one’s home or at bedtime.
When it comes to preventing falls, the program reminds participants that taking it slow and regular exercise are the best defense. When getting out of chairs, it’s best to get up slowly and gain balance before walking. The training stresses the importance of exercising regularly to build strength and improve balance and coordination.
For more information on Remembering When: A Fire and Fall Prevention Program for Older Adults, talk to your local fire department.