Safety First With Space Heaters During Colder Weather

Ponca City Now - November 14, 2022 6:01 am

As colder temperatures continue in our area, electric space heaters may need to be used. There are many fires every winter and even deaths caused by improper use of electric heaters.
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. These fires result in hundreds of deaths, thousands of injuries and millions of dollars in property damage.
Portable electric space heaters 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.
Safety is key to preventing a tragedy during cold weather.
  • Plug a space heater directly into a wall outlet. Do NOT plug any type of heater into power strips or extension cords. Powers strips and extension cords are not designed to handle the high current flow required by most heaters. This can cause overheating and cause a fire.
  • Keep your space heaters out of high traffic areas where a child or pet could knock them over.
  • Buy space heaters with thermostats that automatically shut off when they overheat and automatically shut off if knocked over.
  • Make sure your space heater has the label showing that it is listed by a recognized testing laboratory.
  • Before using any space heater, read the manufacturer’s instructions and warning labels carefully.
  • Inspect heaters for cracked or broken plugs or loose connections before each use. If frayed, worn or damaged, do not use the heater.
  • Never leave a space heater unattended. Turn it off when you’re leaving a room or going to sleep, and don’t let pets or children play too close to a space heater.
  • Space heaters are only meant to provide supplemental heat and should never be used to warm bedding, cook food, dry clothing or thaw pipes.
  • Install smoke alarms on every floor of your home and outside all sleeping areas and test them once a month.
  • Proper placement of space heaters is critical. Heaters must be kept at least three feet away from anything that can burn, including papers, clothing and rugs. Space heaters too close to bedding and furniture is a major cause of house fires.
  • Locate space heaters out of high traffic areas and doorways where they may pose a tripping hazard.
  • 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.
  • Place space heaters on level, flat surfaces. Never place heaters on cabinets, tables, furniture, or carpet, which can overheat and start a fire.
  • Always unplug and safely store the heater when it is not in use.
Stay warm this winter, but be safe.
For more electric safety tips visit https://www.esfi.org.
 

Latest Stories

Benefit Concert “Nightmare B4 Xmas” at Studio 205 This Saturday

Music comes to downtown with “The Nightmare B4 Xmas”, a benefit concert for Peachtree Landing and...

House Page Program Opens Applications

OKLAHOMA CITY – The Oklahoma House of Representatives High School Page Program is now accepting applications...

Teen Robbed, Dragged by Driver in Sale Set Up Online

OKLAHOMA CITY – A driver in Oklahoma City robbed and dragged a teenager with a truck during a shoe...