This week is Winter Weather Preparedness Week in Indiana. Today’s topic is home and heat safety.

Winter poses multiple threats. Tuesday’s topic talked about travel safety and plans you should have when traveling in the winter. You should also have a plan for your home during the winter months as well. 

Alternate sources of heating 

If your power goes out, have a backup plan now. Keep extra blankets at home, have gas for a generator, keep wood handy if you have a fireplace, and also keep a fire extinguisher handy as well in case there is an emergency while heating your home. 

Kitchen Safety

  • Keep the kitchen clutter-free
  • Don’t leave anything unattended
  • Keep hot pots and pans away from children
  • Never throw water on a grease fire
  • Keep small fire extinguishers handy
  • Keep candles away from flammable objects
  • Keep a carbon monoxide and smoke alarm installed and up-to-date
  • Call 911 if there is a fire, regardless if you put it out or not

Fireplace Safety

  • Keep your fireplace clean
  • Have it inspected on a yearly basis
  • Do not burn items that shouldn’t be burned
  • Keep your wood in a moisture-controlled area
  • Never dispose of ashes in a flammable container
  • If you have a gas-burning fireplace and you smell gas or think you have a leak, call 911

Space Heater Safety

  • Keep your space heater at least 3 feet away from anything flammable
  • When you go to bed or leave the house, turn the space heater off
  • Do not plug space heaters into extension cords
  • Do not plug multiple space heaters into one outlet
  • Buy a brand new space heater, new ones have safety features in case they get knocked over

Furnace Safety

  • Have your furnace inspected once a year
  • Keep it clean so it does not overheat

Outdoor firepit Safety

  • Do not burn anything you are not supposed to
  • Build the firepit on a concrete slab
  • Build the firepit away from any structures
  • Keep a hose handy
  • Keep a screen over the top of a wood-burning firepit to keep ashes from flying around

Farm safety during winter weather 

  • Move your animals somewhere sheltered if you can 
  • Ensure they have plenty of food and water that will not freeze 

As always, stay up to date with the forecast and know the difference between a watch and a warning. 

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