Tips for Preventing House Fires

Fires can be deadly to a family. They can take lives and burn down houses within minutes. Taking precautionary methods is the best way to protect your family from fires. Here are some handy tips that can help prevent fires and keep you and your family safe.

1. Install and maintain smoke detectors. If they are battery operated, check them monthly and replace your batteries annually. This may not prevent a fire but can definitely save your families lives.

2. Keep all matches and lighters out of reach of children. Many fires have been started when children have played with matched and lighters not knowing what they are.

3. Have a working fire extinguisher near the kitchen and instruct all in the household how to use it.

4. Do not play with or shoot off fireworks on your property. This is better left to the professionals.

5. Have your heating system checked annually.

6. Check cords on appliances for any frays or tears in them.

7. Do not smoke in your house. Try to smoke outside if possible. If you are going to smoke inside, do not smoke while you are in bed or when you are tired.

8. Check your dryer vent to make sure there is no kink in the line and that the vent is clean of lint. The air can back up into the dryer and cause the dryer to catch on fire.

9. At Christmas time, make sure if you have a real tree, that it is well watered and not dry of you have Christmas lights on. Make sure that the lights are not touching anything that is flammable.

10. Provide nonflammable surfaces around fireplaces.

11. If you are using a space heater, make sure that it is not close to anything else that can catch fire such as clothes and drapes. Make sure that it is steady and will not tip over and burn on the floor. Do not go to sleep or leave the house while a space heater is on. Space heaters are one of the most popular starters of fires.

12. Do not leave your house when you have candles lit. Do not leave lit candles unattended as it is possible for them to tip over while they are burning.

13. Be careful when cooking. Don’t hang loose clothing over the stove. Keep the handles of the pots turned inward.

14. If you have halogen lights in your house, make sure they are away from anything flammable and make sure they are turned off when not being used.

15. Have your chimney inspected and cleaned once a year.

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