Did you know that heating equipment is the second leading cause of home fires in the United States? More than 65,000 home fires are attributed to heating equipment each year. As Blue Water Area residents plug in the Christmas trees, space heaters and general electrical appliances that make for a cozy evening at home, it’s important to remember that safety, sometimes, has to come first.
Portable electric space heaters, specifically, can be a convenient source of supplemental heat for your home in cold weather. Unfortunately, they can pose significant fire and electric shock hazards if not used properly. Fire and electrical hazards can be caused by space heaters without adequate safety features, space heaters placed near combustibles, or space heaters that are improperly plugged in.
Here are a few simple things to remember this cold winter season. Did you know that your space heater should have a label showing that it is listed by a recognized testing laboratory? The proper placement of space heaters is also critical. Heaters must be kept at least three feet away from anything that can burn, including papers, clothing and rugs. The biggest one to remember? Plug space heaters directly into a wall outlet. Do not use an extension cord or power strip, which could overheat and result in a fire. Do not plug any other electrical devices into the same outlet as the heater.