Public Protection Cabinet
Home Heating Season Begins
The recent cold snap has prompted Kentuckians to begin turning on their furnaces and space heaters and using their fireplaces. Kentucky State Fire Marshal William Swope reminds residents to take basic steps to ensure safe home heating.
“Winter is the peak time for house fires,” Swope said. “By taking basic precautions, we can reduce the number of house fires caused by improperly used or maintained heating equipment.”
Have your furnace inspected by a qualified technician at the beginning of every heating season, Swope recommends.
If you use a fireplace regularly, contact a chimney sweep every year to inspect your chimney and clean it, if necessary. Burning wood over time causes a build up of creosote in the chimney; creosote can ignite and cause a fire. To obtain a listing of local chimney sweeps, visit the Chimney Safety Institute of America Web site at http://www.csia.org.
Many residents turn to electric space heaters to help warm their homes. The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) offers these tips on using a space heater:
Ø Make sure your space heater carries the label of an independent testing laboratory.
Ø Never use an extension cord for your heater; make sure the outlet is sufficient for the heater.
Ø Turn off the heater when the room is unoccupied.
Ø Place the heater away from flammable materials, such as drapes, upholstered furniture or bedding. More home heating tips are available at the NFPA Web site at http://www.nfpa.org