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Fire Risks and Potential Signs to Avoid Them

Nobody wants to deal with a fire. Fire hazards in the home range from the obvious to the hidden. Here are a few things to keep an eye open for.

Electrical wiring is also a fire risk. Make sure your wiring is in good condition and is always insulated. Never use a power cable that has exposed wire or loose plugs. Electrical fires are possibly the most common kind. Inspect extension cables before connecting anything to them. Also, be careful what you connect to a power strip. Do not, for example, connect an electrical heater and a hair dryer to the same strip. Power strips should be primarily used for low energy devices such as computers.

Cooking can also cause fires. If you use a gas stove, make sure it is well maintained. Do not continue to mess with a burner that is refusing to light (this can create a build-up of methane in your kitchen which can cause a fire or explosion). Don’t leave stovetop dishes unattended and keep your cookbook clear of the burners. Make sure any dishes you use in your microwave are actually marked as microwave proof and never use metal foil in the microwave.

Test and keep an eye on all electrical appliances. Be wary of second-hand appliances and if an appliance is recalled, stop using it immediately. Do not use anything that is malfunctioning. Be especially careful with space heaters. Do not use them around small children or pets and if possible secure them to the wall so they can’t be knocked over. Never use a space heater to dry clothing.

Finally, do not leave candles, oil burners, incense sticks or burning cigarettes unattended. Do not empty ash trays that are not cold and never smoke in bed.