There’s something very comforting about the winter months. Cozying up in your home with the heat on or by the fireplace, your holiday candles, decorations all around you, and eating lovely home-cooked hot dinners, is unbeatable when it’s cold outside. However, the winter is also a time when your risk of experiencing fires and carbon monoxide poisoning is at a high, so it’s imperative to be aware of how to stay safe.
According to data from the U.S. Fire Administration:
- 67 percent of fires in winter happen in one and two family homes
- 905 lives are lost in winter house fires every year
- More than $2,000,000,000 in property loss is due to winter home fires
- Cooking is the main cause of all home fires in winter
Here, we look at some of the most important winter fire safety tips that could potentially save your life:
Get your furnace checked
If you use your fireplace frequently, it’s imperative that you employ the services of a professional chimney sweep on an annual basis, as fireplaces produce creosote that can ignite when it builds up.
Test smoke alarms
Ensure all your smoke alarms are in working order
Beware of lit candles
Although they can create a lovely, warm atmosphere in your home, naked flames spell danger. Never leave candles unattended, and always supervise children and animals when they’re in the same room.
Be careful with space heaters
Space heaters need space, and nothing should be allowed within three feet of one. In addition, ensure your space heaters have an automatic shut off so they are unable to reach dangerous temperatures.
Be aware of how to safely extinguish kitchen fires
Never throw water on a grease fire. Instead, keep baking soda and salt close to hand to sprinkle on pan fires. Also, keep pot and pan lids close by in case you need to smother a fire. Buy an all-purpose kitchen fire extinguisher, and know how to use it.
Practice an escape route
Regularly practice with your family, how to crawl to the closest exit of each room of your house. Teach everyone how to drop and roll should their clothes every be set alight.
Teach everyone to dial 911
It’s especially important to teach your children to know how to call 911, as it could potentially save your lives.
Through following the tips above, you can better ensure the winter fire safety of you, and your family this winter. In the event that you do encounter a fire in your home this winter, be sure you’re protected with a sound homeowners insurance policy.