Fire Safety

Fire Safety Tips


Kitchen Safety

The number one cause of fires in homes today is due to cooking.  The following tips can keep you from becoming a part of this statistic:

ü  Place a fire extinguisher in the kitchen away from the stove and near an exit.

ü  Keep flammable materials (towels, cookbooks, curtains) away from the stove.

ü When encountering grease fires, turn off the stove or oven and cover with a lid.  Never pour water on a grease fire.

ü Keep kitchen appliances clean and in good condition

ü Only use your microwave for cooking food.  Placing wet objects in the microwave will not dry them and is a serious fire hazard.

ü Wear an apron or tight fitting clothes when cooking.  Baggy clothes can easily catch fire when working near a stove or oven.

When leaving home for long periods of time, turn of the natural gas line feeding your stove or unplug the stove if it is electric.




Electrical Safety


Due to its commonplace existence in everyday life, electricity and the hazards associated with it are too often taken for granted.  By following the tips listed below you can reduce the chances of a fire occurring in your home.


ü  When installing or replacing light bulbs, be sure the wattage rating for the bulb does not exceed the minimum rating of the fixture. 

ü  When using an extension cord be sure not run it under a rug or twist it around a nail or hook.

ü  Allow air space around appliances that can cause overheating such as TV's, microwaves, stereos, and large lamps.

ü  Make sure electrical appliances are recognized by a national testing laboratory such as Underwriters Laboratory (UL).

ü  Never overload a socket.  This often occurs due to use of several "power strips" being plugged into each other. Older homes are more likely to experience overloading.  Some common signs of overloading include: dimming lights when an appliance goes on, a shrunken TV picture, slow heating appliances, or fuses blowing frequently.

ü  If a circuit breaker is constantly tripping, there is an overload of appliances and you need to reduce the number of appliances for that particular circuit.



Smoking Safety

Tips to reduce the probability of fire resulting from smoking are illustrated below:

ü  Never smoke in bed.

ü Use deep ashtrays.

ü  Frequently empty ashtrays.

ü  Be sure to use water to wet the ashes before emptying ashtrays into a trash can.



Open Burning

In Virginia, most forest fires are the result of human actions, and can be prevented by using common sense, following fire safety rules, and obeying fire laws. The greatest number of fires occur in February, March, April and May.

To reduce the risk of fire, follow these guidelines.

ü Clear a safety zone that is wide enough to prevent the escape of the fire.

ü  Keep a supply of water and a rake or shovel readily accessible.

ü DO NOT leave a fire unattended (State Law year round).

ü  If a fire does escape, call 911 immediately.

ü Burn after 4 p.m. (State Law February 15 through April 30 of each year). The law applies to campfires, warming fires, brush piles, household trash, stumps, fields of broomstraw and brush or anything capable of spreading fire. The law provides for a penalty of up to $500, plus payment of court costs and fire suppression costs if the fire escapes. Read more about the  4 p.m. Burn Law from the Code of Virginia.

ü  Burn when the wind is calm.

ü  Obey forest fire laws and air pollution regulations


In this Department

More Information