ABOUT CARBON MONOXIDE
Any single family dwelling heated by a forced air furnace or boiler that burns fossil fuels have a CO detector in close proximity to all sleeping areas. Follow manufacturers recommendations for detailed installation guidelines.
Any multiple family dwelling or apartment/ condominium building heated by a forced air furnace or boiler that burns fossil fuels should have a CO detector installed in the room containing the central heating unit. Individual units that contain their own warm heating plant should have a CO detector located in close proximity to all sleeping areas. Follow manufacturer's recommendations for detailed installation guidelines.
What is Carbon Monoxide?
Who is most at risk?
What should I do if my CO detector goes off?
SMOKE DETECTORS AND FIRES IN THE HOME
What type of smoke detector should I buy?
Where should I install a smoke detector?
Smoke rises, so the best place to install a detector is on the ceiling or high on an inside wall just below the ceiling. All brands have detailed installation/placement instructions. Always follow manufacturer’s guidelines.
In multi-level residence, a smoke detector should be installed on every level. A detector is recommended within 15 feet of every sleeping room as well as inside every sleeping room. Again, follow the directions that come with your smoke detector.
How do I care for my smoke detector?
How do I develop a home escape plan?
Sit down with all members of the family and discuss escape routes to the outside from each room in the residence. Family members should identify a “meeting place” in front of the residence to all members can be accounted for after escape. Whatever plan you develop, it should be practiced.
Most fatal home fires occur at night while everyone is sleeping. Doors to sleeping rooms should be kept shut. If fire strikes, the closed door will protect occupants from both fire and smoke. If you find smoke seeping under the door of your room, DON’T PANIC! Feel the door. If the door is hot use an alternate escape route of go to the nearest window. Make noise to alert others in the residence as well as neighbors. Stay by the window until help arrives. If the door is cool, open the door carefully. If there is smoke in the hallway, close the door and head for the window or alternate escape route. If there is light smoke and no visible flame, stay low and exit the residence quickly alerting others as you head for the door. Once outside the residence, go to the pre-determined meeting place or go to a neighbor's house to call 9-1-1.
What are some of the most common causes of house fires?
Should I have a fire extinguisher?
Yes, an ABC rated fire extinguisher can be used for all fires. Fire extinguishers are designed for small fires in a confined space by persons who have read the directions earlier. Familiarize yourself with the fire extinguishers operation before it is installed in the residence.
Your first action when any fire occurs is to call the fire department and make sure everyone is safely evacuated from the residence. If you think you have time to use the fire extinguisher, make sure you are between the fire and an escape route as the chemical extinguishing agent will make visibility and breathing difficult. Never attempt to extinguish a large or rapidly growing fire, fight fires without an escape route, fight fires in a smoke filled environment. Always assume the fire is never completely extinguished, CALL THE FIRE DEPARTMENT FOR ANY FIRE IN THE RESIDENCE!
WINTER SAFETY TIPS
What can I do to make my home heating system safer?
- Make sure all furnace controls and emergency shut-offs are in good condition and accessible.
- Have your furnace inspected annually by a licensed professional.
- Keep trash and combustible materials away from the furnace.
- Inspect the chimney and flue for cracks or holes.
- Follow manufacturer's guidelines for other maintenance recommendations.
Are space heaters safe?
While space heaters are legal and widely used, the Fire Department does not recommend their use because they can pose certain hazards. Before using a space heater always make sure you have a functioning smoke and carbon monoxide detector. Never use a fuel-burning appliance without proper ventilation. Burning fuel (kerosene, coal or propane) produces deadly fumes. Be certain that the space heater is in good working condition. Store any fuels outside the home at all times. Maintain adequate clearance in all directions around the space heater. Never leave children home alone when a space heater is being used in the residence. If you use an electric heater, make sure your home electrical system can handle the load on the circuit where the heater is being used. Never cover the electric cord with a rug or carpet. Avoid using electric space heaters in the bathroom. Turn off all space heaters before going to bed.
Use only safety listed space heaters that are labeled with the U.L. or A.G.A. certification. Read all directions before using space heaters and follow manufacturers guidelines.