1. Health
You can opt-out at any time. Please refer to our privacy policy for contact information.

Fire Safety for your Family

More Fire Safety Tips

By

Updated July 29, 2012

Step 4 - Follow these recommendations as a safety guide to spot possible fire safety problems which may be present in your home:

Wood Stoves

  • Do not use wood burning stoves and fireplaces unless they are properly installed and meet building codes.
  • Never burn trash in a stove because this could over heat the stove. Gasoline and other flammable liquids should never be used to start wood stove fires. Gasoline will ignite and explode. Use coal only if designated as appropriate by the manufacturer.
Kerosene Heaters
  • NEVER USE GASOLINE. Even small amounts of gasoline mixed with kerosene can increase the risk of fire.
  • Place heater so it will not be knocked over or trap you in case of fire.
  • Never try to move the heater or try to smother the flames with a rug or a blanket if a flare-up occurs. Activate the manual shut-off switch and call the fire department. Moving the heater may increase the height of the flames and cause leakage resulting in personal injury.
Portable Electric Heaters
  • Operate heater away from combustible materials. Do not place heaters where towels or the like could fall on the appliance and trigger a fire.
  • Avoid using extension cords unless absolutely necessary. If you must use an extension cord with your electric heater, make sure it is marked with a power rating at least as high as that of the heater itself. Keep the cord stretched out. Do not permit the cord to become buried under carpeting or rugs. Do not place anything on top of the cord.
  • Never place heaters on cabinets, tables, furniture or the like. Never use heaters to dry wearing apparel or shoes.
Cooking Equipment
  • Never place or store pot holders, plastic utensils, towels and other non-cooking equipment on or near the range because these items can be ignited.
  • Roll up or fasten long loose sleeves with pins or elastic bands while cooking. Do not reach across a range while cooking. Long loose sleeves are more likely to catch on fire than are short sleeves. Long loose sleeves are also more apt to catch on pot handles, overturning pots and pans and cause scalds.
  • Do not place candy or cookies over top of ranges. This will reduce the attraction kids may have for climbing on cooking equipment, thus reducing the possibility of their clothing catching fire.
  • Keep constant vigilance on any cooking that is require above the"keep warm" setting.
Cigarette Lighters and Matches
  • Keep lighters and matches out of sight and out of the reach of children.
  • Children as young as two years old are capable of lighting cigarette lighters and matches.
  • Never encourage or allow a child to play with a lighter or to think of it as a toy. Do not use it as a source of amusement for a child. Once their curiosity is aroused, children may seek out a lighter and try to light it.
  • Always check to see that cigarettes are extinguished before emptying ashtrays. Stubs that are still burning can ignite trash.
Materials That Burn
  • Look for furniture designed to reduce the likelihood of furniture fire from cigarettes. Much of the furniture manufactured today has significantly greater resistance to ignition by cigarettes than upholstered furniture manufactured 10 to 15 years ago. This is particularly true of furniture manufactured to comply with the requirements of the Upholstered Furniture Action Council's (UFAC) Voluntary Action Program. Such upholstered furniture may be identified by the gold colored tag on the furniture item.
  • Do not place or leave ashtrays on the arms of chairs where they can be knocked off.
  • DO NOT smoke in bed. Smoking in bed is a major cause of accidental fire deaths in homes.

Related Video
Plan a Home Fire Drill

©2014 About.com. All rights reserved.

We comply with the HONcode standard
for trustworthy health
information: verify here.