Safely heating the home during shift in temperatures

Safely heating the home during shift in temperatures
Safely heating the home during shift in temperatures(WNEM)
Published: Nov. 15, 2022 at 11:21 PM EST
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KANAWHA COUNTY, W.Va. (WSAZ) - After a string of brush fires in the viewing area last week, rain this week brought a welcome change for many people.

The rain brought a drop in temperatures, prompting the Charleston Fire Department to encourage people to use caution when heating their homes.

Andrew White, a Lieutenant Fire Marshal with CFD, said safety starts with an inspection of the home’s heat source.

“With the cold temperatures beginning in the region, make sure if you have a home fireplace you have that inspected by a professional,” he said. “If you have gas heating appliances in your home, make sure your carbon monoxide detectors are properly maintained in working order so that you’re not exposed to carbon monoxide.”

White said many house fires CFD responds to during the winter months are caused by misuse of home space heaters.

“They are a cheap, affordable way to heat your home. You can put them in a bedroom properly, heat that home pretty cheaply,” he said. “However they’re not designed to be plugged into extension cords. What happens is that will overheat the circuit and therefore possibly cause a spark, which could lead to a fire in the home.”

White said those who plan to host out-of-towners for the Thanksgiving holiday recommend going over a fire safety and exit plan before the festivities begin so everyone can celebrate with peace of mind.

“It’s a good thing just to make sure to talk with them and make sure that your fire alarms are properly working order. Make sure that everyone knows how to get out of your home if there is a fire, as well as where to meet up if there is a fire and for young children, too,” he said.

“There may be coming in with a family that’s not familiar with your home.”