MOST COMMON SOURCES OF HOUSE FIRES
Electrical Short Circuits
Wirings and anything that uses electricity may cause a fire when it is poorly taken care of – appliances left turned on for a long period of time, outlets are overloaded with plugs, devices are not installed properly, wires are loose or left under heavy objects.
Avoid these by making sure to:
- Unplug devices/appliances when not in use
- Turn off the lights to avoid overheating
- Do not overuse an extension cord
- Make sure that wirings have properly located in a safe space
- Do pest control or use mouse traps to get rid of vermin that might chew on wires
- Keep children away from wires and plugs
Overheating of pan and pot, most especially when there is cooking oil, is one of the major causes of residential fire which is mostly caused by carelessness – leaving the pan unattended.
Luckily, this situation may always be prevented with attentiveness in the kitchen as well as putting away combustible materials in a proper distance from the stove and other sources of heat.
It is true that it’s sometimes difficult to watch over candles all the time especially when it is used as a house light. Therefore, to avoid fire, candles must be:
- Placed in a container which could be a heat-resistant glass/ceramic
- The container must be on a leveled surface
- Placed away from flammable objects, draping cloth/curtain, and overhanging cabinets
- Not left unsupervised for a long period of time
This major cause of fire is also preventable with the following practice:
- Set an outdoor smoking space or any space that is less covered
- Use large ashtrays that are deep
- Properly dispose of cigarette buts so it won’t go elsewhere near combustibles
- Extinguish your cigarette completely
Chemical and Gases
Flammable liquids (e.g. thinner, solvents, paints, etc.) which are not stored and closed properly as well as gas tanks or stoves that are not tightly closed can cause fire and spread quickly.
To avoid these, make sure to:
- Store the flammable liquids in a cool dry place while tightly sealed
- Wipe the excess liquid that is poured on the container bottles
- Clean the surfaces where these liquids were spilled
- Store these chemicals away from the heat source
- For gas tanks, make sure the hose connecting to the stove is properly installed and turn it off by sealing the tank tightly after use
MOST UNCOMMON SOURCES OF HOUSE FIRES
The heat caused by sunlight may cause a combustible object to overheat and ignite a fire. Other cases were also caused by sunlight which traveled from a reflection coming from mirrors and glass wares (e.g. glass jars left near the window).
Though this is a rare case, it is best to do these preventive measures:
- Pull down blinds and window curtains when possible
- Use ceramics for plant vases left near the windows
- If possible, do not place glass jars or other reflective materials under the direct heat of the sun
One type of battery that is most likely to ignite fire is the 9-volt battery. This is because its positive and negative terminals are located on the same side thus when connected to a metal can easily produce a spark. Avoid this by just putting the batteries in a safe container and cover the terminals with a duct or electrical tape before disposal.
Pets and vermin can cause fire easily by chewing off wires and knocking off objects. Supervise your pets and make sure sources of fire are put on a high surface. You may use mouse traps or sticky papers to catch vermin that lurk around the house.
A dishwasher is an appliance that does not get much attention and care when it comes to home fire prevention because homeowners focus mostly on ovens, dryers, and other commonly known sources of fire. But faulty dishwashers have caused about 500 fires each year in the U.S.
To avoid these, do the following precautions:
- Always check leaks and water dripping outside the compartment that may coat the wires of the dishwasher
- Do not leave your appliance running when you are not at home
When dust accumulates, it can easily catch fire when connected to a source of heat. Therefore, to prevent this, regularly dust not just your furniture and appliances, but also the hidden areas of the house which are seldomly cleaned.
Most cases of residential fires can be prevented. Keep yourself aware of these hazards and install your house with fire safety equipment (e.g. fire blankets for adult and child and fire extinguisher) and fire-resistant evacuation sheets such as the AlbacMat rescue mat and S-CAPEPLUS evacuation mattress so, in case of emergency, you may easily prevent the fire from spreading, protect and evacuate your loved ones in time and keep everyone safe before the firefighters arrive.
For fire safety and emergency evacuation equipment, contact us at [email protected], and ARASCA team will support you 24/7.