KINGSPORT – The Kingsport Fire Department reminds residents that heating equipment is a leading cause of home fire deaths. Half of home heating equipment fires are reported during the winter months. Some simple steps can prevent most heating-related fires from happening.
- Keep anything that can burn at least three feet away from heating equipment, like the furnace, fireplace, wood stove, or portable space heater.
- Have a three-bart kid-free zone around open fires and space heaters.
- Never use your oven to heat your home.
- Have a qualified professional install stationary space heating equipment, water heaters or central heating equipment according to the local codes and manufacturers instructions.
- Have heating equipment and chimneys cleaned and inspected every year by a qualified professional.
- Remember to turn portable heaters off when leaving the room or going to bed.
- Always use the right kind of fuel, specified by the manufacturer, for fuel burning space heaters.
- Make sure the fireplace has a sturdy screen to stop sparks from flying into the room. Ashes should be cool before putting them in a metal container. Keep the container a safe distance away from your home.
- New homes and new furnishings burn faster and reach higher temperatures more rapidly than older homes and furnishings.
- Install smoke alarms in every bedroom, outside each sleeping area and on every level of your home.
- Test smoke alarms monthly.
- Replace any smoke alarms that are over 10 years old with new smoke alarms that have both ionization (detects fast burning fires quickly) and photoelectric (detects fast slow smoldering fires quickly) sensors equipped with long life batteries.
- Plan and practice a home escape plan with your family.
- If you do have a fire Get Out and Stay Out and call 911.
The Kingsport Fire Department has a limited supply of smoke alarms and hearing impaired alarms available at Station 1, 130 Island Street. Tennessee State Law requires landlords to provide working smoke alarms to rental homes and apartments.
For more fire safety information go to www.nfpa.org