Since these freezing temperatures aren’t something we deal with very often in San Antonio, we may forget that staying warm can be very dangerous.
That’s why the San Antonio Fire Department is reminding residents of some simple safety tips concerning the source of heat in your home.
First off make sure your furnace is clean. Use a vacuum cleaner to get rid of dust, cobwebs and lint that can building up inside. Once that’s cleared out, replace the filter.
If you use those portable space heaters on these cold days, make sure they are free of dust and lint as well before you plug them in.
Give your space heaters some space. About 3 inches in all directions and remember they are high voltage devices so only plug in one in an electrical outlet.
Nothing is more cozy than sitting around a roaring fire in your fireplace but again, there is some danger when they aren’t properly maintained.
Inspect the fireplace and chimney at least once a year. Look for cracks in the firebox, flue, and chimney. Also, check for the build-up of soot inside the flue.
Open the damper enough to allow the smoke and gases to escape up the chimney. Never start a fire with gasoline, kerosene, or any other flammable liquid.
Always keep a good-quality metal fireplace screen in front of the fireplace whenever it is being used to prevent burning logs from rolling out or embers from flying out.
Hoarding puts first responders in harm’s way. Firefighters cannot move swiftly through a home filled with clutter. Fighting fires is very risky in a hoarding home. It is hard to enter the home to provide medical care. The clutter impedes the search and rescue of people and pets.
If you need assistance, call 211 24 hrs a day. If you have an emergency, please call 911.