During the winter months, the number of residential fires increases due to home heating. Many individuals turn to alternative heating methods as a way to decrease the high utility bills. Be sure to consider the following:
- Never use a range or oven as a supplemental heating device. It is a safety hazard, as well as a source of potentially toxic fumes.
- Space heaters should be in good working order. Inspect the unit to make sure that it is free of dust buildup and that the cord is not frayed or broken.
- If using electric space heaters, be sure not to overload electrical circuits.
- Avoid using space heaters in bathrooms or other areas where they may come in contact with water.
- Always maintain 3 feet between the space heater and anything combustible. That includes bedding, curtains, upholstered furniture and people.
- Turn space heaters off before going to bed or leaving home. An unattended heater can be the source of a deadly fire.
- Supervise young children when space heaters are in use. Children can receive serious burns when touching a heater, or they might accidentally tip the heater over.
- If using kerosene heaters, refill them outside. Only use fuel that is approved for the type of heater that you have. Read the manufacturer’s instructions.
With the onset of the holiday season, it is important to focus on fire safety and prevention. For 12 days, Hall County Fire Services will be providing tips for making your holidays safe. For more information, contact Lt. Beverley Walker with Hall County Fire Services at 770-531-6838.