Temperatures are forecasted to drop this weekend. Some of us turn to space heaters and fireplaces to keep the chill out of their homes. Remember to use care and caution when using space heaters and fireplaces. They can easily cause house fires if not properly used. Just recently, a fire started by a space heater claimed the lives of 17 people, including 8 children, in the Bronx, New York City.
State Fire Marshal Jonathan Jones said “The risk of fire always increases any time heaters are turned on and fireplaces are in use. As such, we need to remain vigilant about fire safety. Especially since our statistics reveal more home fires occur during the winter months than during any other part of the year.” Last year during the winter, six heating-related fires resulted in six fire deaths in South Carolina.
Remember these important fire safety tips:
- Space heaters need S-P-A-C-E, keep at least 3 feet or space clear around the heater.
- Use space heaters according to the manufacturer’s instructions – Have the fireplace and chimney inspected before use.
- The fireplace should have a sturdy screen to stop sparks from leaving the fireplace.
- Do not use an oven to heat your home.
- Be alert for the silent killer – Carbon Monoxide. If you have appliances that use fuel in your home, you should install a Carbon Monoxide alarm.
- Smoke alarms save lives! Test your smoke alarms to make sure they work. Replace alarms that are over 10 years old.
- Have an escape plan with your family, find two ways out of each room and identify a safe meeting place outside.
For additional fire safety information, follow North Charleston Fire Department on their website, Facebook, Twitter, NextDoor, and Instagram.
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