Biggest Winter Home Risks
The winter season is a prime time for house fires. Half of all destructive fires tend to occur in Dec.-Feb., according to the National Fire Protection Association. But most home fires are preventable. Here are two leading culprits to watch for:
Space heaters. These devices are the leading cause of house fires in the winter. Make sure the heater is at least three feet away from anything flammable. Plug it directly into the outlet, not an extension cord. And do not go to bed with the spacer heater still on, experts warn. “Most space heater accidents happen while everyone is sleeping,” says Peter Duncanson, director of disaster restoration training for ServiceMaster. Cooking. The leading cause of house fires year-round is stovetop cooking. Interestingly, the majority of these fires occur within the first 15 minutes of cooking. Never leave the house when the oven or stove is on. Keep oven mitts, dish towels, and other flammable items at least three feet away from the stovetop.