Avoiding a Fire during the Winter Months

  • For many New Yorkers, space heaters are a popular and effective way to beat the cold during the frigid winter months but, if used improperly, can easily become a fire risk. According to the National Fire Protection Association even though only 32% of home heating-related fires are started by a space heater, almost 80% of home heating fire deaths involve space heaters. If you use a space heater read and remember the following tips published by the National Fire Protection Association:

    • Have a three-foot “kid-free zone” around open fires and space heaters.
    • Supervise children when a fireplace, fire pit, or other space heater is being used. Use a sturdy, metal screen to prevent contact burns, which are even more common than flame burns.
    • All heaters need space. Keep things that can burn, such as paper, bedding or furniture, at least 3 feet away from heating equipment.
    • Use heating equipment that has the label of a recognized testing laboratory.
    • Never use your oven for heating.
    • Install stationary space heating equipment, water heaters or central heating equipment, according to the local codes and manufacturer’s instructions.
      • Have a qualified professional install the equipment.
      • Make sure all fuel-burning vented equipment is vented to the outside to avoid carbon monoxide poisoning. CO is created when fuels burn incompletely. CO poisoning can cause illness and even death. Make sure the venting for exhaust is kept clear and unobstructed. This includes removal of snow and ice around the outlet to the outside.
    • Install and maintain carbon monoxide alarms to avoid risk of carbon monoxide poisoning.
    • Maintain heating equipment and chimneys by having them cleaned and inspected annually by a qualified professional.

    If you or a loved one were hurt in a preventable home fire, contact us today. We may be able to help you secure compensation for your injuries.