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Spring Fire Safety Tips

With more daylight available and warmer temperatures approaching, many people start on their home project lists they put off during the colder months. Spring cleaning is very important in keeping your house safe from fire. Here are a few things you can do to prepare now.


Many people haven’t used their grills in several months which may have grease and other build up. Be sure to inspect it for any damage and clean out any debris, spider webs and nests that might have made the grill home. Also, position your grill away from your house and keep it away from windows, heating and air condition units as well as any vegetation and low hanging branches. Clean the grease and fat build up every time you cook. Keep children and pets at least 3 feet away from the grill at all times and never leave your grill unattended.


Be sure to clean up any dead vegetation and debris in your yard like dried leaves and fallen branches that are extremely flammable. Be sure any structures such as houses, garages, sheds and other out-buildings are clear of debris on roof and in close proximity. Move trash and woodpiles at least 30 feet away from the house.


Store gasoline in a container that is sold for that purpose, and never bring it indoors. Keep it stored in a garage or outdoor shed with the container tightly capped. Only use gasoline as motor fuel, never to breakdown grease.

Flammable and combustible liquids such as gasoline, lacquers, nail polish, paint thinner, stains and kerosene should not be used near an open flame. If you spill a flammable liquid on clothing, place it outside. Once dry, you can wash it normally.

Keep liquids in their original containers with a tight cap/seal. Never store these liquids in glass containers.

 Never leave cleaning rags in a pile. Take them outside to dry; keeping them away from the house. Put dried rags in a metal container with a tight cover. Fill container with a water and detergent solution which will help break down the oils. Keep these containers full of rags in a cool place away from sunlight and heat sources.


With the time change here and clocks forward an hour, change the batteries in your smoke alarm and carbon monoxide detectors. If your smoke alarm is older than 10 years, it needs to be replaced. Test smoke alarms monthly as well.


Keep the area around your hot-water tank clean and clear of combustibles. This includes accumulations of dust and dirt, paper of any type, and especially any flammable liquids. Paint thinner, cleaning agents, and gasoline are all examples of dangerous liquids that should be stored well away from the water heater.


Be sure your air exhaust vent pipe for the dryer is not restricted and the outdoor vent flap opens when the dryer is operating. Keep the dryer clear from any items that are flammable.


You can never be too prepared when it comes down to having an escape plan. Know two ways out of each room and have a designated “meeting spot” outside of the house where all household members know to meet in case of a fire. Practice this plan frequently.  Be sure your address is in clear view of the road. Take into account your pets and what their needs may be in an event of a fire.