"While these numbers are frightening, nearly all of these fires are preventable," said Wilton Fire Marshal David Kohn in a release.
The Wilton Fire Department recommends some simple home heating safety tips, so residents can help keep our community safe and warm this winter.
- Space heaters need space. Keep all things that can burn, such as paper, bedding or furniture, at least 3 feet away from heating equipment. Make sure that the heater is placed on a flat level floor and not on a rug or carpet.
- Turn portable heaters off when you go to bed or leave the room.
- Plug power cords only into outlets with sufficient capacity and never into an extension cord.
- Inspect for cracked, frayed or broken plugs or loose connections. Replace before using.
- Never use gasoline in a kerosene heater. Even a small amount can be dangerous.
- Have your chimney inspected each year and cleaned if necessary.
- Use a sturdy fireplace screen.
- Open the fireplace damper before lighting the fire and leave it open until the ashes have cooled. This will prevent the buildup of poisonous gasses in the home.
- Allow ashes to cool before disposing. Dispose of ashes outdoors in a metal container with a lid. Hot embers can remain long after a fire is out.
- Install smoke alarms in every bedroom, outside each sleeping area and on every level of the home. For the best protection interconnect all smoke alarms throughout the home - when one sounds, they all sound. Test smoke alarms at least once a month.
- Install and maintain a carbon monoxide alarm in a central location outside each sleeping area.
- Never use an oven to heat your home.