Now that the holidays are over, the tree has been taken down, and the decorations have been put away, many people are able to relax and put their worries aside. Most people assume that with the holidays ending, the risk of a home fire ends as well, however, it is just the opposite. We would like to provide you with some factors to keep in mind, as well as some safety tips, to continue to keep yourself and your loved ones safe this season.
Did you know that heating is the second leading cause of home fire, deaths and injuries in the US? These fires most commonly occur in the months of December, January, and February. Space heaters are most often involved in home heating fires, so it is important to keep them away from flammable objects and to unplug them when not in use.
Commonly known as the invisible killer, carbon monoxide is an odorless, colorless gas created when fuels such as gasoline, wood, coal, or propane do not burn completely. In home situations, heating and cooking equipment that burn fuel are potential sources of carbon monoxide. These incidents are more common during the winter months and in residential properties. It is important to check your carbon monoxide detector regularly and to change it out when needed.
Living in an area where winter storms are common, we encourage you to be aware of the risks associated with them. Winter storms can cause dangerous and sometimes life-threatening conditions. Blinding wind-driven snow, extreme cold, icy road conditions, downed trees and power lines can all wreak havoc on our daily schedules. It’s not surprising that home fires occur in the winter more than any other season. Make sure to have snow tires on your vehicles if you are commuting in icy, snowy areas. Be responsible with the trees around your house and have them cut back if they are encroaching on a power line.
Portable generators are useful during power outages, however, as a homeowner, you should be aware of the proper use of them and the risks. The most common dangers associated with generators are carbon monoxide poisoning, electrical shock or electrocution, and fire hazards. Statistics prove that half of generator-related deaths happened in the four coldest months of the year, and portable generators were involved in the majority of carbon monoxide deaths involving engine-driven tools. If you have a generator at your home, be sure to understand fully how to use and maintain your generator to keep your home safe.
The winter season is a great time for friends, for adventures, and for cozying up at home. The last thing you want to worry about is having a home fire, so we hope these tips and tricks can help to ease your mind and keep you safe this winter season. As always, if you have any questions, please feel free to reach out to your friends at Carbondale Fire District at anytime.