State Fire Marshals Office releases fire safety tips
NASHVILLE, Tenn. — The Tennessee State Fire Marshal’s office is urging Tennesseans to focus on home fire safety.
According to a news release, the second week of January is typically the most tragic week for fire-related incidents in Tennessee.
The state has averaged almost four fire-related deaths during the second week of January since 2015, marking the highest number of fire deaths for any week of the year, the release says.
Heating fires are one reason for the increase in fires and fire-related deaths, and heating equipment is the third leading cause of home fire deaths, the release says.
The State Fire Marshals Office has released the following fire safety tips:
- Keep flammable items like blankets or furniture at least three feet away from space heaters and wood stoves.
- Practice a home fire escape plan with your family. Everyone should know two ways out of each room.
- Never smoke in a home where medical oxygen is present. The increased presence of oxygen in the air makes fire burn hotter and faster.
- Always turn portable heaters off when leaving the room or going to bed.
- Never use your oven to heat your home.
- Have heating equipment and chimneys inspected every year.
- Burn only dry, seasoned wood in fireplaces and wood-burning stoves. Never burn garbage or use flammable liquids to start a fire.
- Make sure any fireplace has a sturdy screen to stop sparks from flying out. Ashes should be cool before disposing of them in a metal container. Keep the container a safe distance away from your home.
- Install wood-burning stoves following manufacturer’s instructions or have a professional do the installation. All fuel-burning equipment should be vented to the outside to avoid carbon monoxide poisoning.
- If you smell gas coming from your gas heater, do not light the appliance. Leave the home immediately and call your local fire department or gas company.