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Have An EXIT Strategy Where You Live, Work and Play

Have an EXIT Strategy

Americans overestimate the amount of time they might have to escape from a fire. Although many believe they would have at least six minutes to escape before a fire becomes life threatening, the reality is that fire and toxic smoke spread much quicker than you think.

In a matter of seconds, a small fire can grow into an inferno, producing thick, toxic smoke and temperatures of 800 degrees or more. Flashover, the point at which superheated gases cause everything in a room to ignite, can kill occupants throughout a home within 2-4 minutes.

In a fire, seconds count. It is difficult to see through the thick, toxic smoke. People panic and rush to the only way they know out-the entrance. The entrance may not be the best (or quickest) way out, however.

When you enter a building, any building, plan an exit strategy. Notice at least two exits you could use in the event of a fire. Get out alive.

The SFMO invites you to join in spreading the Have an Exit Strategy message far and wide. Working together, we can make our communities safer.

Useful Information for Download

Additional Exit Strategy and Fire Safety Education Resources

Fire Safety Education Resources for Educators
The State Fire Marshal's Office offers a variety of programs and services that promote fire-safe awareness and behavior among Texas' young people.

Exit Strategy Education Resources for Fire Safety Professionals
In the summer of 2004, the State Fire Marshal's Office conducted fire safety inspections of bars, nightclubs, lounges and dancehalls in eight Texas counties. Of the 189 establishments inspected, 182 had means of egress violations. A fire-related catastrophe could strike a Texas nightclub. The SFMO's Fire Safety Evaluation Report of Bars, Nightclubs and Dance Halls, and other related information and resources, is available on-line at


A public service campaign such as Have an Exit Strategy rarely has the funding, manpower, or resources to achieve what it sets about to accomplish. The success of any such effort is the result of individuals, organizations, and companies who give of their time and money in an effort to further the public good. Such is the case in this initiative, and we thank the following for their help, guidance and inspiration.

To learn more about the Have an Exit Strategy initiative, to find out how you and your company or organization can get involved, or to order materials, please contact:

For more information, contact:

Last updated: 10/12/2017