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Home Safety

If you find yourself on fire, DON'T PANIC!

  • STOP - Do not run away when clothing is on fire.
  • DROP - Drop to the ground, covering your eyes and nose with your hands.
  • ROLL - Roll forward and backward like a rolling ball.

Children must physically practice this technique so they will know what to do when an emergency arises.

Fire Extinguishers

Keep fire extinguishers handy. Multi-purpose dry chemical extinguishers work well on wood, grease, other flammable liquid and electrical fires. make sure there is at least one extinguisher on each floor of your house, particularly in or near the kitchen, garage, laundry room and workshop.

Have every adult in the household read the extinguisher instruction manual so they know how to use it properly.

Periodically inspect your extinguishers to determine if they need to be recharged or replaced.

Electrical Check List

Check all household items to prevent shock or fire.

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Electrical Cords

  • Replace frayed or cracked cords
  • Remove cords from under carpeting or furniture
  • Avoid overloading extension cords
  • Read the label on (UL) or (FM) approved cords for proper electrical rating

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Electrical Appliances

  • Replace or repair appliances that do not operate properly
  • Plug in portable appliances only when in use
  • Do not cut the third prong (ground) off you appliance plug. The third prong is there to prevent electric shock
  • When you shop for appliances or tools, look for recognizable underwriters laboratories (UL) label or Factory Mutual (FM) labels.
  • Have a professional electrician check for faulty wiring, especially if your moving into an older home. Be certain your wiring is professional and can handle today's sophisticated electrical needs.
  • Never us an electrical appliance for anything other than its intended use. Hair dryers aren't meant to dry clothing, and ovens aren't intended to heat your home.
  • Unplug all counter-top appliances when not in use, including toasters, space-heaters, coffee makers and irons. When plugged into an outlet, all appliances still have dangerous electrical voltages inside of them-even when they're turned off.
  • Keep appliances and their cords away from water. If an appliance falls into the water, don't retrieve it until you've unplugged the appliance.
  • An appliance that has fallen into water should not be used again until it has been properly inspected by a qualified technician. Water damaged products can give you a lethal electric shock.

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Light Bulbs

  • Unnecessary high wattage may lead to fire through overheating.
  • Replace bulbs with a bulb of the correct type and wattage.
  • If you are not sure, only use a 60 watt bulb

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Halogen Floor Lamps

  • Never place materials (such as clothing and towels) on top of a halogen lamp.
  • Halogen bulbs use less energy than incandescent bulbs, but they burn much hotter.
  • Never place a halogen lamps in children's bedrooms or playrooms.
  • Don't use a bulb higher than 300 watts in your halogen lamp.
  • Avoid leaving high-wattage (more that 100-watts) halogen lamps on when you leave the room or when you are not at home.
  • Never touch a halogen bulb with bare fingers. Even a bulb that has been turned off for several hours can burn you, and your skin oils will damage the bulb.

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  • Clean your fireplace regularly and have the chimney cleaned and inspected every year.
  • Use a screen around the fireplace to protect your home from popping embers.
  • Extinguish the fire before you go to sleep.
  • Place embers in a closed metal container on a fire-proof surface.
  • Never start a fire or try to revive one with gasoline or other flammable liquids.
  • Trim tree branches back at least 10 feet from your chimney.

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Space Heaters

  • Never add fuel to a portable heater that is turned on or still hot; the fuel could explode into flames.
  • Never run the heater's cord under a carpet, rug or furniture. This could cause the cord to over heat and start a fire.
  • Keep flammable materials - including bedding, clothing, draperies, rugs and furniture - at least 3 feet away from the heater, even if your space heater has safety features such as cut-off switches or heating element guards.
  • Don't use space heater in rooms where children are unsupervised, and might poke fingers or other objects through the heater protective guards. Even the slightest contact with a heating coil or element can cause a severe shock, burn or fire.
  • Never leave space heaters on while your sleeping.

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Kerosene Heaters

  • Place the heater out of high-traffic areas such as doorways and hallways.
  • Store kerosene outdoors, out of reach of children in tightly sealed containers labeled "kerosene".
  • If flames appear outside the heater cabinet, call the fire department immediately. Do Not attempt to move the heater.
  • Keep kerosene heaters in well-ventilated rooms.
  • Turn off the heaters when you go to sleep. Never leave it operating unattended.
  • Place the heater at least 3 feet from furniture, curtains, clothing and other flammable objects.

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Wood or Coal Burning Stoves

  • Check your stove pipes and chimney regularly for creosote build-up. Shiny creosote deposits look like black paint, and are in indication that your wood stove is not working properly.
  • Burn seasoned wood to minimize creosote build-up. Wood stored in the spring will be seasoned and ready to burn in the fall, although a longer storage time is preferable.
  • Don't overload the stove with wood. This can cause the wood to smolder, and produces excessive creosote build-up.
  • Keep combustibles away from the stove.
  • Keep a dry chemical fire extinguisher on hand in the event of a chimney fire. Close the damper and air inlet immediately, then call the fire department.
  • Don't connect a wood stove to a fireplace chimney unless th4e chimney has been properly sealed around the stove-pipe. Don't connect more than one stove to a chimney.

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Furnace Maintenance

  • Check heating equipment regularly for rusted parts and insecure mountings.
  • Keep furnace clear of all combustible materials.
  • Install a ceiling of fire-resistive materials such as fire drywall or fire-resistant acoustic tile, especially if heating equipment is in a basement that is often in use.

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Dryer Vents

  • Check your dryer vent and vent hose regularly for lint accumulation. Heat build-up could spark a fire in the hose or your dryer.
  • Dryer vents should be made of rigid metal. Flexible plastic vents can be damaged by high heat, age and contact with other objects, while accordion vents (plastic or metal) can crimp and are more likely to trap lint.
  • The vent should be run as short a distance as possible, never more than 25 feet in a straight line.
  • All vents should discharge directly to the home's exterior, never to a crawl space, attic, garage or chimney. Make sure you have a back draft damper at the termination point.

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Smoking and Matches

  • Smoking is still the leading cause of deadly home fires. NEVER smoke in bed or when your are drowsy!
  • Never empty ashtrays into the trash can shortly after smoking. Wait several hours for the smoldering embers to completely extinguish themselves.
  • Thoroughly check both sides of the couch and chair cushions for dropped ashes.
  • If a cushion or couch has been burned or scorched, put it outside away from the house overnight and call the fire department.
  • Never smoke or light matches near flammable materials.
  • Teach children the danger the playing with matches. Keep matches away from children's reach.

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