Fire Prevention - Heating Sources
The National Fire Protection Association reports that 1,345,500 fires were reported in 2015, up 3.4% from the previous year. Those fires led to 3,280 civilian fire deaths and 15,700 injuries and causing $14.3 billion in property damage. A fire department is responding to a fire every 23 seconds. Keep those statistics in mind as we move into the colder part of the year. Staying warm during the winter months means more people are turning up furnaces, space heaters and firing up those wood stoves. Keep the following tips in mind for keeping your family safe and warm this winter:
-Avoid using extension cords to power any unattended heating source. Voltage drops through undersized extension cords can cause a dangerous fire hazard. Always use UL approved, gauge appropriate cords and make sure space heaters are not left unattended.
-Always keep at least a three foot perimeter around any heating source clear of any combustible material. Make sure doors / fireplace screens are in place and functioning properly to keep sparks and burning material where it belongs. Make sure to have chimney flues inspected and cleaned annually. Avoid leaving candles or any open flame unattended, even for a short period of time.
-Test all smoke and CO alarms monthly to make sure they are working properly. It’s also a good idea to develop and practice an evacuation plan in case the unexpected does happen. Having multiple escape routes and a designated meeting place in the event of a fire will help you and your family stay safe.
As always, if the unexpected does happen you can always count on SERVPRO of Missoula to respond to any fire or smoke damage. We have the knowledge, experience and top of the line equipment to help make any fire damage “Like it never even happened.” Call us today at 406-327-9500 to see what SERVPRO can do for you.