(Atlantic) January is the peak month for residential fires. When heating systems kick on, home fires rise. Taking precautions can drastically lower the risk of a fire occurring in your home.
Atlantic Fire Chief Mark Mcnees says when using a space heater make sure it is on a dedicated circuit because they draw a lot of amps, don’t leave them running unattended and don’t leave them on overnight either. Mcnees says use a heavy duty cord and don’t put them underneath a rug and keep loose items away from them.
“Space heaters are very handy and they can take the chill off, but they are also pretty dangerous,” stated Mcnees.
He says infrared heaters aren’t as dangerous as far as igniting something close to it, but some of the older models are if they have weak and thin electrical connections that tend to fail.
“Or if you have old electrical wiring in the home it sometimes overheats inside the wall or underneath a crawl space where the wiring inside the home has overheated and caused a fire,” Mcnees said.
Mcnees adds a lot of space heaters draw 15 or 20 amps.
“If you have more than that on it, then you are really overloading that circuit,” said Mcnees. “That’s the biggest danger with the space heaters.”
Mcnees also suggests that residents have their furnaces checked and inspected every year. He says Alliant Energy offers a $30.00 rebate for those that service their furnace.
January 11, 2013