A Review of Fireplace Safety Tips

  Wintertime is usually filled with snow days, hot coco, warm fuzzy socks, and gathering around the fireplace to listen and sing holiday songs with the family. Although this year may look a little different, fireplace safety is just as important as always. According to Injury Facts  over the past several decades, deaths from home fires in the U.S. have steadily gone down – from 5,200 in 1980 to 2,820 in 2018. But home fires are still the leading cause of death for children ages 1 to 14. Follow fireplace safety practices to make sure you are protecting yourself and…

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Another Deadly Gas Explosion in Maryland

Local news sources are reporting a deadly explosion in Baltimore this morning has left at least one person dead, multiple trapped residents, and several more injured people. The Baltimore Fire Department called it a “major gas explosion.”  Investigations as to the cause of the explosion and recovery efforts continue. As I posted in 2016 following a deadly apartment explosion in Silver Spring, Maryland, the injuries from such incidents can be very serious. Burn injuries are considered some of the most traumatic personal injuries a person can suffer. At least a million people in the United States are injured from burns…

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Daylight Saving Time Is Here: Replace Your Smoke Detector Batteries as You Reset Your Clock

This year, Daylight Saving Time will begin on Sunday, March 8th. When “springing forward” your clocks, you should also take the time to replace the batteries in your smoke detectors. Proper safety procedure requires that people should test their smoke detectors at least once a month using the “test” button, replace their batteries every six months, and replace the entire smoke detector unit every ten years. To easily track when you replace the batteries, the Consumer Product Safety Commission recommends you change them as daylight saving time begins and as it ends. Most smoke detectors have an area to write…

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Fire Safety Reminders For Christmas Trees And Holiday Lights

Chestnuts roasting on an open fire may form an evocative Christmas image, but ideally, that orange glow will remain safely contained within the fireplace. Sadly, the very decor that makes the season so cheery often leads to tragedy, as evidenced by alarming statistics from the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA). Christmas trees, in particular, are dangerous, with the NFPA reporting that these key decorative elements prompted 160 known home fires between 2013 and 2017. Most could have been avoided, had homeowners abided by these key safety precautions: Keep Heat Sources Away From Trees Candles and trees should not mix. Most…

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Is Your Home Fire-Safe?

When was the last time you thought about fire safety and prevention in your home? From 2012-2016, U.S. fire departments responded to an average of around 355,400 home fires per year, which caused a total annual average of 2,560 civilian deaths and 11,670 injuries. Fire safety awareness is an essential first step to avoiding such a situation yourself. October Fire Safety month may be over, but it is always a good time to make sure you have everything you need to keep yourself and your family safe. Here’s a quick and easy checklist to go over: Check that your home…

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Preventing Halloween Costume-Related Injuries

When you picture top Halloween safety issues, you probably imagine drunk drivers or laced candy. In reality, however, the very costumes your children wear while trick-or-treating may pose the greatest risk of all. The following are among the most dangerous costumes worth avoiding this year: Floor-Length Outfits Costumes that drag behind kids can serve as a major tripping hazard. Yes, it’s annoying to hem up ill-fitting outfits, but it’s far worse to see your children trip and fall. Cosmetic Contact Lenses Older children or teens may beg for cosmetic lenses that turn their eyes spooky colors. Like any contacts, however,…

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Outdoor Fire Pit Maintenance and Precautions

Fire pits—whether they are portable or permanent—can provide warmth, ambiance, and style to outdoor gatherings. Since summertime is often associated with fire pit get-togethers, owners should be careful about the potential dangers if they fail to perform maintenance and take proper precautions. Necessary Maintenance Routine basic upkeep of outdoor fire pits is required just like an indoor fireplace would need. If you do not use your fire pit year round, thoroughly clean it at the beginning of each heavy-use season and remove excess ash buildup from previous use. During winter and spring months when fire pits are not used as…

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Local Fire Caused by Charcoal Highlights the Risks of Cooking without Precautions

Charcoal briquettes that were still hot after a family was finished grilling caused a fire on Sunday in Prince George’s County. Grilling is a fun activity for the whole family, but includes inherent risks of injury and property damage. In this case, there were luckily no reported injuries; however the property damage was estimated to be around $100,000. Education and hazard awareness help to mitigate risks so that this type of suffering does not need to occur. The Prince George’s County Fire Department provides the following tips for grilling in their Summer Safety First series: Never use a grill indoors…

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2 Recent Fires in DC Homes Highlight Danger of Broken Smoke Detectors

Two homes in DC were burned after fires broke out on Tuesday, June 4th. Both fires broke out in buildings with non-functioning smoke detectors. One woman died from her injuries after being rescued by firefighters, and a dog was found dead after the other fire. These fires demonstrate the danger of having broken or absent smoke alarms in the home. The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) states that households without functioning smoke alarms have double the death rate from fires compared to households with a sufficient amount of working smoke alarms. Here are some tips from the NFPA about how…

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Fireworks Safety Tips for the Fourth

It’s no surprise that fireworks maim and injure people every year. Just ask Jason Pierre Paul. The NFL defensive end decided to light some fireworks on July 4th of 2015. His dramatic encounter with fireworks cost him part of his hand and quite a bit of money. His dramatic encounter with fireworks will forever be the event he remembers about his life. In 2016 alone there were 11,100 reported injuries in the U.S. Fireworks can be enjoyable, but need to be handled safely. Listed below are some tips from the Red Cross to enjoy fireworks safely: Stay at least 500…

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