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Connecticut State Police Patch STATE OF CONNECTICUT
Department of Public Safety
1111 Country Club Road
Middletown, Connecticut 06457
 January 15, 2009


Winter Fire Safety

Fire safety is a major issue during the winter months especially since the most recent cold snap has arrived in the State of Connecticut.  Many fires can be prevented as our citizens make every effort to try to stay warm in their home.  Some simple suggestions will not only keep you safe but can prevent a fire in your residence.

  • Install a smoke and carbon monoxide alarm in your home. Regularly test the device. Replace the smoke alarm if it is older than 10 years.
  • When installing and using alternative heating appliances such as wood or pellet stoves use them in accordance with the manufacturer’s directions and building code regulations.
  • Use seasoned wood. Soft, moist wood accelerates creosote buildup and causes fires.
  • Do not ever use flammable liquids such as gasoline to start a wood stove.
  • Make sure space heaters are far enough away from combustibles. (at least 3 feet or more)
  • Have your furnace and chimney cleaned at least once a year.
  • Provide proper ventilation for all appliances.
  • Use a glass or metal screen in the front of your fireplace to prevent sparks from igniting carpet or furniture. These sparks can and do cause fires.
  • Never use your oven to heat your home.
  • Do not use your BBQ grill to heat your home. It’s a fire danger and Deadly gas is emitted.
  • Never thaw pipes with a blow torch or other flame. Use hot water or a UL-listed device such as a hand-held dryer.
  • Dispose of hot ashes in covered metal containers placed away from the house or other buildings.

A properly installed and maintained smoke alarm is the easiest and best way to ensure your family has warning during a house fire. Connecticut families need to change that battery twice annually and check them monthly. Remember to practice your house emergency escape plan with your family.  The winter months are always the busiest time for Fire Departments. Practice these winter fire safety tips.


Lt. J. Paul Vance