There are approximately 385,500 house fires that occur every year. Unfortunately, many homeowners fail to do some of the simple things that can prevent these types of disasters. We are sharing 3 things you can do today to better protect your home and family from a fire.
Check Smoke Alarms
- This is one of the best and easiest ways to protect your family from fire danger. Install smoke alarms on every level of a home, in basements, inside bedrooms, and outside sleeping areas. Consider installing interconnect smoke alarms that will all sound when one sounds.
- Test alarms at least once a month. Batteries will need to be replaced yearly. Schedule a specific time each year or replace when the chirping reminds you the battery is low. Non-replacement 10-year lithium batteries are the exception to this rule.
- Replace smoke alarms older than 10 years old.
Be Smart in the Kitchen
- Kitchen fires represent over 50% of home fires. Too often the kitchen is a place overlooked or treated too casually when it comes to cooking and this can lead to fire danger.
- When you are cooking, be alert. Do not use the stove if you are sleepy or have been drinking alcohol.
- Keep small children at least three feet away from cooking areas.
- Always stay in the kitchen when frying, grilling, boiling, or broiling food. If you are leaving, even for a moment, turn off the stove.
- Keep flammables away from the stovetop including potholders, towels, and other typical kitchen items used while cooking.
- When cooking, wear short, close-fitting or tightly rolled sleeves.
- With baking, roasting, and simmering, check on your food regularly and set a timer for reminders.
- Never disable a fire alarm while cooking.
- Grills should be positioned at least 10 feet from siding and deck railings, and out and away from under eaves and overhanging branches.
Be Smart with Heat Sources
- Improper use of devices used for heating can lead to destruction and death. Heating equipment is the leading cause of house fires in the winter.
- Be sure to keep all flammables at least 3 feet away from a space heater.
- Always turn off a space heater when going to bed or leaving the room.
- When using gas heaters, be sure to install a carbon monoxide detector to avoid CO poisoning.
- Have your heater inspected and cleaned by a qualified professional before the winter season begins. That includes any space heaters, wood-burning devices, or chimneys.
Your home and family’s safety is everything. Fires can have devastating consequences. Taking the needed time to do the simple things, can go a long way in preventing these disasters.
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