MARIPOSA--Nancy B. Koerperich, unit chief of the Cal Fire Madera-Mariposa-Merced Unit, invited people to stop by your nearest Cal Fire/Madera, Mariposa, or Merced County fire station between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. during Fire Prevention Week and meet local fire station personnel. Koerperich said in a news release: “Fire prevention week is an excellent time to protect your homes and families with life-saving technology and planning."
National Fire Prevention Week is Oct. 9 - 15. It's a sensible time for all family members to conduct a “home fire safety check-up.” According to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) more than 360,000 home fires were reported in 2009. The leading causes of home fires are: cooking, heating and electrical equipment, as well as candles and smoking materials.
Fire is a dangerous opponent, but by anticipating the hazards, you are much less likely to be one of the nearly 13,000 people nationally , that are injured in a home fire each year.
Cal Fire offered the following tips for protecting your home and family from fire:
--Stay in the kitchen while you are frying, grilling, or broiling food. If you leave the kitchen even for a short period of time turn off the stove.Keep anything that can burn at least three feet away from all heating equipment, like the furnace, fireplace, wood stove or portable space heater.Have a three-foot "kid free zone" around your stove, open fires and space heaters.
--Replace or repair damaged or loose electrical cords.
--If you smoke, smoke outside (always use an ash tray)
--Blow out all candles when you leave the room or go to bed. Avoid the use of candles in the bedroom and other areas where people may fall asleep.
--Install and maintain working smoke alarms and carbon monoxide alarms in your home.
--Keep all matches and lighters out of the reach of children.
Plan, Prepare and Practice your family fire escape plan. Take this opportunity to test your smoke and carbon monoxide alarms. If you do not have a smoke or carbon monoxide alarms in your home please purchase and install them this week. If your smoke or carbon monoxide alarm is not working please replace the battery or purchase a new alarm. Practice your fire escape plan.
Fire Prevention Week is a good opportunity to replace or repair loose or frayed cords on all electrical devices. Check the electrical outlets in your home to make sure you have not overloaded them. Remember to plug only one high-wattage appliance into each receptacle at a time. Never run extension cords across doorways or under carpets. In homes with small children, use plastic safety covers on unused electrical outlets.
CAL FIRE firefighters look forward to your visit, and they hope that by stopping by your fire station to meet your local firefighters, taking a small amount of time to conduct a home safety inspection and installing smoke and carbon monoxide alarms that you can save your home and family from the devastating effects of a home fire.
Additional information may be obtained at your local fire station or on the CAL FIRE website at www.fire.ca.gov