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Common Causes of Fires, and Ways to Prevent Them
Fire Prevention & Safety Information
Kitchen Fire While Cooking
- Don’t leave food cooking unattended.
- Pay special attention to hot grease or oil.
- Always supervise children.
- Keep a fire extinguisher nearby, and make sure it shows “A, B, C.”
- Never use water on a grease fire! Salt or baking soda can also be used to extinguish a fire; or, smother a fire in a pan by putting a lid on it.
Wood/Coal/Pellet Stoves or Fireplace Inserts
- Make sure your stove or insert has a “UL” label on it.
- Make sure your stove was installed properly by a contractor, according to NFPA standards for proper clearances, floor covering, wall covering, flue and chimney.
- Make sure your chimney is cleaned regularly, especially at beginning of the season.
- Never use homemade stoves, which are a common cause of fires.
- Don’t install or use stoves in a garage; they can contact combustible materials more readily.
- Burn candles and potpourri only when you are in the room.
- Keep open flames away from curtains and other combustible materials.
Outside Burning and Bonfires
- Don’t start open fires when ground and surrounding vegetation is dry.
- Don’t burn when winds are stronger than a gentle breeze.
- Always have a strong water source ready in case a fire begins to get out of control.
- Stay with the fire at all times.
- When finished, rake through the ashes to ensure that all coals are cooled.
- Make sure all outside antennas are properly grounded.
- Install lightning rods to reduce possibility of fire by lightning strike.
- Be sure that your home’s wiring is updated and adequate to handle electrical loads.
- Don’t overload circuits. Breakers trip and fuses blow when overloaded.
- If you have an older heating system, get it checked by a professional for safety.