TIPS & TRICKS
As heating systems kick into high gear, it’s important to protect family and pets from potential fire hazards. The leading cause of fire in the United States has been shown to be kids playing with matches, lighters and candles, so a good start to preventative efforts would be to remove temptation from little hands and keep ignitable materials in secured, hard-to-reach places. Additionally, if you follow the tips included in this column, you’ll be assured of a snug, safe winter!
- If you have kids, check under mattresses and in closets for signs that a child may be playing with fire.
- Teach a year-round safety lesson by placing a smoke detector outside your child’s room and let your little one help you change the battery each year.
- Never place candles near curtains or other linens. If you’ve left a window open, remember that a curtain can float far into the room, so check distances, even if a lit candle appears far away from a window.
- Check manufacturer’s labels for fire resistance when you purchase pajamas for your children to be certain they stand every chance of surviving a fire safely.
- Make it a rule to keep a three-foot space between portable heaters and bedding, clothing, curtains and other flammable items.
- Do not store old mattresses in the home or the garage, as they could easily turn into fire hazards.
- Install and maintain smoke detectors on every level of your home (preferably outside a bedroom). Change batteries annually.
- Create two routes out of your home in the event a fire breaks out. Hold family fire drills to rehearse using those escapes.
- Teach kids this trick: stop, drop and roll. If they master it and their clothing catches fire, their chances of survival will be excellent.