I don't normally write intensely personal things, but this is very important, so here goes:

Yesterday morning on the show, our crack news woman, Kathy Whyte, gave me the heads up that a house fire was being battled by firefighters on the West side of Binghamton. I thought "huh, that's where our nephew and niece-in-law live." Then I got the address from Kathy and sure enough it was their house.

It is a double house with my family in one side and their tenants on the other. The fire started, apparently, in the tenant's kitchen. They were rescued from the roof. My nephew, Matt, was away but his wife, Ayana, and their 19 month old child got out safely thanks to the smoke detectors going off.

If those batteries had not been changed twice a year, the story would have been tragic. The house is a total lose, but we have our family members.

Think about it for a minute. What would you do if your house was on fire? What precious things would you lose? Would your family be prepared to get out safely? Could you get your pets to safety? You need to make a plan and actually practice it.  Get tips here.

Just remember, you won't be able to escape if you don't have warning. Take care of those smoke detectors and change them out every 5 to 10 years.