Fire moves quickly and can start in an instant, killing over 4,000 Americans each year and injuring an additional 20,000. In the United States, over $7.2 billion is reported in property damage from fire each year. October is Fire Prevention Month, and it is important to keep your home and loved ones safe and prepared in case of an emergency. Boston Board Up Services has some tips for you to follow.
Prevent Electrical Fires
Everything has a separate device now, and those devices come with chargers. Overloading surge protectors or extension cords can cause them to overheat and spark. While a pile of wires may not be the most aesthetically pleasing sight, placing them under rugs or in high-traffic areas around your home or business can cause them to be stretched or yank the plug out of the outlet. If connection between the plug and the outlet is poor, this can cause the plug to quickly overheat and lead to a fast-moving fire. You should unplug anything you are not currently using, including appliances and chargers. If you begin to notice a strange smell or your appliance overheats, shorts out or begins sparking, you should shut off and unplug the device immediately and repair or replace it. You should keep your appliances away from curtains, which can spread fire quickly if your appliance overheats. After doing your laundry, make sure you clear out your dryer vents to prevent blockage in your metal exhaust ducts.
Be Careful When Heating Your Home
As it gets cooler outside, you should be mindful of how you heat your home. If you are using a portable heating unit, make sure you leave plenty of space around it. Keep a perimeter of at least three feet available around the heating unit. If you have a fireplace, make sure you have your chimney inspected and cleaned at least once a year to prevent buildup and blockages in your vents. Make sure you always use a fire screen, or a door on a wood-burning stove, to contain the flames within the fireplace. If you use alternate heaters, make sure you check to make sure they are safe for indoor use, and have your furnace serviced by a certified professional.
Have A Plan
The most important thing you can do to avoid a fire and reduce the risk of injury is to prepare. You should have smoke detectors in each room of your building, and they should be checked at least once a month. Change your smoke detector batteries every six months. A common rule of thumb is to change the batteries with Daylight Savings Time. Come up with an escape route for each room of your home, and practice escaping with your family. Make sure everyone stays low to the ground and knows to check doors with the back of your hand.
If your Boston area home has been damaged by fire, contact Boston Board Up Services immediately. We will go to your home, secure your roof and board up any damaged windows or doors that day. We can be reached 24 hours a day at (800) 949-9113, or you can fill out our contact form.