Winter and Holiday Safety By Williston Fire Department
Importance Of Fire Safety • Fire kills more Americans than all natural disasters combined. Annually 4,000 people will lose their lives to fire. • Approximately 25,000 people will be injured by fire this year. • Each year during Dec 24th, 25th, and 26th there will be an estimated 12,000 fires.
A Clean Furnace • Faulty Heating systems cause 40 percent of all home fires during the winter months • A qualified individual should inspect your furnace, water heater, fuel lines, and gas pressure regulator every year. • DO NOT try to service your furnace if you are not qualified to do so.
A Clean Furnace • Furnace filters should be changed once a year or more if you have animals whose hair may become stuck in the filter. • When there is debris in your furnace, it is blown all around your home when your furnace runs. Then, you breathe this dirt and debris in. • A dirty furnace is one of the top reasons for furnace fires.
Clean Your Furnace Remember to clean the area around your furnace, as well, because combustibles stored around the furnace are a huge fire hazard.
Clean Your Chimney Before and after each heating season, you should clean your chimney.
Clean Your chimney • When cleaning your chimney, you should look for crumbling bricks, loose mortar, obstructions and creosote. • If you burn wood, you may need to clean your chimney more often depending on the type of wood being burned.
Clean your chimney Always burn only well seasoned, hard wood. This will reduce the amount of creosote in your chimney.
Keeping Your Vent Pipes Clear • A heating system has a vent to get rid of the poisonous air that is made during combustion. When blocked, the hazardous gas may enter your home. • Some individual vents may be located only approximately 1-2 ft off the ground. • During a Vermont winter, a vent located so close to the ground will often become blocked with snow.
Keep Your Vent Pipes Clear • When the pipes are blocked, the harmful gases are unable to escape and are forced back into the house.
Space Heaters • Used improperly, a space heater is the most dangerous appliance in your house • Don’t leave a space heater running when you leave the room. • Keep space heaters at least 3 feet from anything that might burn.
Space Heaters • Do not use extension cords with Space heaters as the high electrical current that is needed could melt the cord. • Do not use a stove as a method of heat, it is unvented which is dangerous to your health.
Holiday Safety Each Year during the holiday season, fires injure 2,600 individuals.
Holiday Safety • According to the USFA, Christmas trees will cause an estimated 200 fires this year alone resulting in 6 deaths, 25 injuries and 6 million dollars in damages. • When selecting a Christmas tree, be sure to pick a fresh tree. To determine freshness, the needles should be green and hard to pull back from the branches. • Be careful not to place your tree near a heat source, as it will dry out the tree more quickly increasing the chance for fire.
Holiday Safety • The tree should be given water frequently to help keep the tree fresh. • A Christmas tree should not be left up for more than 2 weeks. • Do not discard your tree by placing it in the stove or fireplace. You can dispose of your tree at the CSWD for free as long as tinsel and lights have been removed.
Williston Fire Department • If you have any questions, feel free to contact the Williston Fire Department at 878-5622 or visit us at 645 Talcott Rd Williston, VT.