KINGSTON, LUZERNE COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) — As the outside gets colder, so do our homes, and it’s important to keep some safety tips in mind while warming up your home during these coming months.
28/22 News Reporter Emily Allegrucci spoke with a local fire department to tell us some dos and don’ts. She had the chance to speak with the Assistant Chief for the Kingston Forty-Fort Fire Department, Chris Hadesty, who spoke about some common and dangerous mistakes he sees when temperatures drop and how to avoid them.
Falling temperatures are packaged with rising risks at home.
“Obviously the cold weather is here, everybody’s kinda in a rush now to get their whole homes heated up,” Assistant Chief Hadesty said.
But the cost to heat a home is pricey, causing many to opt for affordable alternatives to get warm.
Although these options may be wallet-friendly, Assistant Chief Hadesty says he has seen some nasty burns lately.
“We are starting to have more and more calls for those types of incidents where we’re finding blocked chimneys or people using fireplaces or actually open burning in their own home,” Assistant Chief Hadesty explained.
Although the majority of the fires that the Kingston Forty-Fort fire department responds to are accidental, these seasonal accidents can be prevented by using precautions.
“Call the plumber, have your furnace checked, have your chimney checked, have it cleaned. You’d be surprised the amount of calls that we go out on where we ask the homeowner, “Hey when’s the last time the furnace was serviced?” and they have no idea,” said Assistant Chief Hadesty.
Space heaters are great to warm up a smaller room, but there are some mistakes people make that could start a fire.
“You want to have that two to four-foot circle around it. You don’t want to have anything combustible near it, people have a tendency to lay clothes, newspapers, anything like that near it and it may have an issue,” Assistant Chief Hadesty added.
Where you put the unit is just as important as where you plug it in.
“Plugging it into an extension chord and into another extension chord or into a power strip which is already overloaded, that pressure causes heat, causes resistance which eventually could break the chord down and cause a fire,” Assistant Chief Hadesty continued.
And no matter what source of heat you use when the temperature drops, smoke alarms and detectors for the silent killer are a must.
“Make sure you have a carbon monoxide detector too, especially if you’re using an alternative source of heat like a kerasine heater, coal stove, pellet stove,” said Assistant Chief Hadesty.
Assistant Chief Hadesty says the most important thing while using heating alternatives is to use common sense and follow directions.