CABELL COUNTY, W.Va.(WSAZ) -- As colder weather moves in, firefighters say you should watch out for heat.
"People are starting to use fireplaces and gas in their homes...it opens up a realm of possibility for things to go wrong," Milton firefighter Nick Smith said.
Fire prevention week kicked off Sunday, and it's all about stopping flames from starting and spreading. Experts say turning up the heat at home could put you at risk, but there are steps you can take to keep yourself safe.
"You should make sure there is at least one smoke detector in every room," Smith said. "That way you can hear it while you're sleeping. And make sure the batteries are changed."
Firefighters also say you should keep an extinguisher handy in your home, but make sure it's up-to-date. They say you should take a minute to look at the tag, which should include the current year to work effectively.
But even with the best precautions, they say things can still go wrong. So if that happens, ask for help right away.
"Call 911 immediately," Smith said. "There's no shame in that...accidents happen. Call so we can get it under control."
Firefighters say make sure you have a home escape plan, draw a map and know two ways out of every room.
They also encourage you to practice a fire drill and have an outside meeting place. Also install smoke alarms in every bedroom and hallway and test them monthly. Finally, teach your kids how to get out in case you can't help them.
Firefighters say fall leaves can make flames outside spread faster. So if you're burning anything outdoors, they say you should keep a water source nearby and never leave a fire unattended.