It’s that time of year when leaves have been falling off trees, our homes and cars are sometimes covered in frost as we awaken, and we’re cheering on our favorite football teams. The cooler temperatures mean we are spending more time inside and are starting to crank up the heat to stay warm. While we want everyone to stay cozy, there are some basic guidelines to follow to keep yourselves safe as you do so. The National Fire Protection Association offers these tips:
• Keep anything that can burn at least three-feet away from heating equipment such as the furnace, fireplace, wood stove, or portable space heater.
• Have a three-foot “kid-free zone” around open fires and space heaters.
• Never use your oven, or in the case of a power outage your BBQ grill, to heat your home.
• Have heating equipment and chimneys cleaned and inspected every year by a qualified professional.
• Make sure the fireplace has a sturdy screen to prevent sparks from flying into the room.
• Remember to turn portable heaters off when leaving the room or going to bed.
• As Daylight Savings Time ends in November, change the batteries in your smoke alarms. Also ensure to test them once a month.