Heating your home is the second cause of house fires
Many residents throughout the Northland are now bringing out the space heaters and turning on their furnaces. Heating your home is critical in the winter, but many chimneys, furnaces, and other heaters might need maintenance.
Lorraine Carli, the Vice President of Outreach and Coordination with the National Fire Protection Association, said we see the peak of heating fires in the winter months of December, January, and February.
“The vast majority of fires can be prevented by taking some simple steps. You could have as little as 2 minutes to escape a home fire.” Carli said. “Make sure that you shut those space heaters off at night. If you have a fire in your fireplace or wood burning stove, make sure that the fire is fully out before you go to bed.”
When it comes to using a space heater or a lit fireplace, keep anything and everything at least three feet away.
The National Fire Protection Association says one in seven house fires begin by a space heater or furnace. Unfortunately, one in five fatal fires are also related to a heating device left on overnight.
David Rosa, a fire inspector with the Superior Fire Department, advises against overloading a power strip. Also another reminder from Rosa is to check your device’s wires. One of the main causes of electrical fires are from exposed wires.
“All electrical appliances should be plugged into a certain suppressors. Try not to Daisy chain all your extension cords together,” Rosa said. “Electrical fires, you can start to smell. Outlets and plugs will get hot, especially on extension cords. The products can get warm if you’re drawing too much amps through them.”
Charlie DeVille, the Project Manager at NorthStar Mechanical, said October is the month for homeowners to be proactive with maintaining their furnace, heaters, and chimneys for safely heating your home.
“If your furnace is from the nineties or even older, it’s time to get a new furnace,” DeVille said. “It may still work, of course, but imagine if something goes, it’s a race against time because we have to get heat back in your house before bad things happen.”