Fires are devastating disasters, and certain areas of the home are more at risk than others. There are several reasons why fires occur – impaired electrical wires, overheated devices, unwatched fireplaces, and forgotten candles – and you can prevent most of these with the use of a few simple home fire safety tips.
One of the most important ways to stop Hartford house fires is knowing exactly what areas and items are most likely to be fire hazards. Refer to the following fire safety guide to get a better understanding of the more vulnerable spaces and appliances in your home and how you can take preventive action to keep them both safe from the threat of fire damage.
Kitchen Is the Top Hot Spot
The kitchen is, unsurprisingly, the room where most home fires develop. Statistics indicate that approximately 50 percent of house fires begin the kitchen because of devices that use heat and electricity. These incidents are most often due to the impact of unattended stovetops or ovens, fabrics ignited by heat sources, and dirty appliances that start grease fires.
Many Appliances Are Fire Hazards
Many homes have a range of appliances powered by gas, heat, or electricity; all of which can present fire hazards. Appliances that are 15 years old or older are especially at risk if not maintained and cleaned regularly. Here’s what to look out for when fire-proofing your household appliances.
Dryers: Beware of Lint and Dust
The accumulation of dust and dirt inside a dryer is the primary cause of fires in laundry rooms. Remove any lint and dust after you use the dryer to keep its filter clean. You should also clear your dryer’s hose of debris and dust at least once a year.
Older Dishwashers Can Be Problematic
Heating components in a dishwasher elevate the water temperature to help dry the dishes, but these systems can easily become too warm and catch on fire. This is especially prevalent in older or broken machines.
Microwaves: Watch What Goes Into Them
Microwaves can present a fire hazard if you heat food on surfaces made of materials like aluminum foil, Styrofoam, and certain types of plastic. Avoid heating food on anything that isn’t 100% microwave safe to reduce the risk of a fire.
Toasters: Keep Them Clean
The electrical components in a toaster can break down over time and cause the appliance to remain on even after switching it off. Bread crumbs can build up inside the toaster and catch fire, as well, so clean your toaster regularly and refrain from leaving it unattended.
Bedrooms Offer Numerous Hazards
There are numerous fire hazards in a bedroom. Bedding, fabrics, mattresses, and curtains are common household items that tend to catch fire. While mattresses produced after 2007 are flame resistant and meet higher safety criteria, those produced prior to this are generally not up to date with mattress flammability standards. So, if you have an older mattress, think about getting a new model to ensure the safety and security of your home in the event of a fire. In addition to investing in a mattress that meets safety standards, installing smoke alarms in all your Hartford bedrooms and establishing an emergency escape plan that incorporates two different ways to leave each room are relatively simple ways to prepare ahead of time.
Fireplaces and Chimneys
There are a few common problems that develop with the structural elements of fireplaces and chimneys that can result in rising temperatures or dehydrated chimney liners, which can pose a severe fire hazard if left unfixed. Be sure to keep your fireplaces and chimneys cleaned and properly maintained. This means having these structures professionally examined and cleaned at least once a year or when there is an accumulation of dangerous debris. You should also keep rugs, curtains, and all other types of fabrics away from your fireplace.
Living Room Full of Flammable Objects
Like bedrooms, living rooms often have a range of flammable objects, such as a drapes, furniture, and electronic devices, which can ignite and spread fire quickly. As the top cause of living room fires, candles are a high-risk household accessory that all homeowners should keep a close eye on. Be sure not to leave a candle unattended and always place it far away from other flammable objects.