Winter is here and so are the holidays! It's the time of year where people enjoy family and friends, cooking, and decorating. But unfortunately, it is also the time of year when a risk for fire increases.


  • Before starting the fireplace, make sure the flue is open and remove all items hanging from the fireplace such as stockings, papers, etc.
  • Be sure to use a fireplace screen when lighting the fireplace.
  • Do not burn anything in the fireplace except approved wood.
  • Make sure that when using a space heater, that the heater is the only thing plugged into the electrical outlet.
  • Keep all items at least a minimum of three feet away from all heaters in all directions.
  • If using a heater that requires fuel, make sure it is the correct fuel for that heater and follow the manufacturer's recommendations on the proper operation of the heater.


  • Do not wear loose clothing while cooking.
  • Keep all loose items away from the cooking area such as pot holders, papers, rags, etc.
  • Do not leave cooking foods unattended.
  • Turn off all cooking food if you have to leave.
  • Turn all pot handles towards the back of the stove.
  • For a grease fire, cover the pan/pot with a lid.
  • Do not attempt to remove the pan while on fire.
  • If available, use the properly rated fire extinguisher to extinguish the fire.


  • Smoke detectors should be installed on every level of your home and inside each sleeping area.
  • Test them at least once a month.
  • Keep the detector free of dust, dirt, etc.
  • Batteries should be replaced at least twice a year or when the detector "chirps" which is signaling a low battery.
  • Install a Carbon Monoxide detector especially is you have any appliances that require a flame; Hot water heater, stove, space heater, etc.


  • Keep matches, lighters, etc. out of the reach of children, preferably in a locked area.
  • Make sure you have large, deep, non-tip ashtrays for smokers.
  • Empty ashtrays often, wetting the contents before dumping them into wastebaskets.
  • If a fire occurs in your home, "Get Out, Stay Out, and Call For Help!!"
  • Create an "ESCAPE PLAN". Practice the Escape Plan with your family.
  • Never open doors that are warm to touch.
  • Crawl low under smoke.
  • Never smoke in bed or when you are sleepy.
  • Stop, Drop, Cover Your Face and Roll if your clothes ever catch on fire.