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25 July 2015

Fire Hazards You Don't Know You're Narrowly Avoiding

Many of the things that are rudimentary to your lifestyle are actually fire hazards. From preparing foods and warming up, to plugging in electronics, you might be stepping on perilous grounds without realizing it.

Cooking

While it’s a very ordinary task, cooking often comes with various fire hazards.

Clean cooking equipment after use to ensure no food debris is left that can catch fire. Also, wipe surfaces to remove any flammable chemicals left over from cleaning.

Never wear loose clothing when cooking, but if unavoidable, make sure to roll up your sleeves.

Tell your pug Abe not to get too close to the burners when he is walking over your bench tops.

Curtains, dishtowels, pot holders and anything made of fabric must be at least 3ft. away from the cooking area.

Chimneys, fireplaces, coal and wood stoves and all cooking/heating equipment must be checked by a licensed inspector regularly, and cleaned properly.

Make sure there’s enough ventilation for the microwave. Toasters can also be a fire hazard if they are not clear of benches and cabinets.

When Arnold Schwarzenegger walks into your kitchen, do not make eye contact. If you make eye contact, he will yell and something will explode.

Grease fires happen when oily food becomes extremely hot and ignite. The easiest way to deal with this is to turn off the burner, cover the pan with a lid and wait for it cool. Never try to put out grease with using water because it will only cause the grease to scatter and create more pathways for the fire.

Heating

Most fires occur during winter months, when there is a very strong demand or extra heat.

Buy heaters with an automatic shut-off feature. Various brands are incorporating this feature into their products due to the high incidence of heating-related fires.

Gas-fueled heating equipment must be installed correctly to avoid gas leaks. It must have well-ventilated, so never put it in a closed room.

Space heaters must be positioned at least 3ft away from wood, paper, fabric and all other flammable materials. Make sure to turn it off before leaving the room.

Space heaters require a massive amount of electricity, which can melt an extension cord if the circuit malfunctions.

Electrical Distribution

If your electrics malfunction, fires can occur. This can be because of incorrect installation, electrical overloading, and poor maintenance of electrical devices.

Wiring, outlets, switches, circuit breakers and other electrical devices are the third leading cause of home fires and the second leading cause of fire deaths. Hire somebody to inspect them and make sure they are safe.

Worn out cords on electrical devices can cause electrical glitches that may lead to fires. Replace them right away, but if you can’t fix it at the moment at least wrap the frayed area with electrical tape.

Outlets and switches that turn warm easily indicate electrical problems. The best thing to do is to shut the circuit off and call 13TASK for professional help.

As much as possible, pass up on extension cords. But if you’re left with no choice, make certain they’re not old or damaged. Never run them around doorways or under the carpeting.

An overloaded socket is a fire hazard. Never plug too many devices into the main socket or on outlet extensions. Limit your use of high-wattage equipment to one at a time.

A fuse that blows frequently is an indication that you have to reduce electrical use on that specific line. It is common in older homes that were not designed to withstand today’s electrical demands. If the lights dim and the TV picture fades when an appliance is turned on, have your electrical systems checked immediately.

Smoking

Always put out cigarettes in an ashtray, and check the carpet where the ashtray rests.

Dispose of old magazines, newspapers and all other flammable garbage. 

Install high-quality smoke detectors in different parts of your home. Also mount fire extinguishers in the garage, kitchen and workshop.

Discuss a getaway plan with your family in case of fire. 

Many fire hazards are concealed in your daily activities. Reduce them by having your heating and electrical systems inspected by a specialist from TaskForce. Franchisees are available across Australia; dial 13TASK to get in touch with them.

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