Winter Fire Safety Tips
Heating equipment is the second leading cause of home fires in the United States. With the recent dip in temperature, the Parkersburg Fire Department makes the following suggestions to keep your home fire safe this Winter:
SPACE HEATER SAFETY
- Keep your heating equipment and anything that can burn at least 3 feet apart.
- Plug power cords only into outlets with sufficient capacity and never into an extension cord.
- Turn off heaters when you leave a room or go to bed.
- Inspect for cracked or broken plugs or loose connections, and replace any before using.
- Never use or store flammable or combustible liquids near or in rooms with heaters.
- Portable space heaters should have an automatic shut-off.
- Portable space heaters should be plugged directly into an outlet (not an extension cord).
Space Heater Safety Video
FURNACE & CHIMNEY SAFETY
- Furnaces should be inspected and serviced by a qualified professional every 12 months.
- Chimneys and vents should be cleaned and inspected by a qualified professional every 12 months.
- Wood for fireplaces or wood stoves should be dry, seasoned wood.
- Fireplace screens should be metal or heat-tempered glass, in good condition and secure in position.
- Have a covered metal container ready to use to dispose cooled ashes.
- Ash containers should be kept at least 10 feet from the home and any nearby buildings.
- Children should know to stay at least 3 feet away from the fireplace, wood stove or other space heaters.
SMOKE & CARBON MONOXIDE ALARMS
- Test carbon monoxide alarms and make sure they are working.
- Carbon monoxide alarms should be located on every level of the home.
- Test smoke alarms and make sure they are working.
- Smoke alarms should be on every level of the home, inside each bedroom and outside each sleeping area.
- For the best protection, smoke alarms should be interconnected so when one sounds, they all sound.
The Parkersburg Fire Department does have a program to supply free smoke alarms for city residents that qualify. In addition, the fire department will assist city residents with smoke alarm installation and battery replacement.
For more information about fire safety education, visit the Parkersburg Fire Department at: www.OnlyMinutesAway.com
This article was written by Chief Taylor