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Cold weather prompts warning

Posted by CFA Media
Monday, 09 April 2012

MFB and CFA are concerned about a spate of fires in the last 24 hours and have issued a warning to people to make sure they are ready for the cold weather.

MFB Acting Chief Fire Officer Rob Taylor said Victoria has moved into a cold spell as autumn advances and winter draws closer. 

“Many people will be turning on heaters for the first time in six months and it’s important they take a few simple safety precautions,” he said. 

MFB and CFA are advising people to: 

  • Ensure all heaters are properly maintained
  • Make sure smoke alarm batteries have been changed and the alarms tested – only a working smoke alarm saves lives
  • Don’t piggy back electrical appliances off power boards. It can cause an overload leading to an electrical fire
  • Keep drying clothes at least a metre from heaters, especially electric bar heaters (See Link)
  • Take care with candles and don't leave them unattended 
  • Keep matches and lighters well out of reach of children
  • Ensure fireguards are used around wood heaters
  • Keep any flammable materials and accelerants away from homes
  • Don’t deadlock yourself in you home; if there is a fire escaping is made more difficult  

CFA State Duty Officer Gavin Thompson said most home fires are preventable with a bit of forethought and planning. 

"Just a few simple steps will reduce your risk of becoming a fire victim and, as the weather turns colder, we can all do something to protect ourselves,” he said.

 

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Last modified on Tuesday, 10 April 2012 16:53
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Comments (1)Add Comment
Barry O'Connor
...
written by Barry O'Connor, April 12, 2012
All residents who have solid fuel or gas heaters and hot water services should have their flue's checked at least every two years. If you are burning solid fuel that is not fully dried, you should have your flue checked every year, before lighting the first fires in autumn. Creasote builds up in the flue or chimney and over the summer months dries out. This material is highly combustable and can cause serious damage to the flue or chimney. In extreme cases the heat will cause the building to ignite, or will spew red hot ash out onto the roof and gutters igniting any dry material outside the house. Contact your local plumber for a service of your heater or hot water service.

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