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Common Residential Fire Hazards

Once started, a fire can rage out of control in minutes. Many people don’t realize how quickly a fire can spread. But a small fire can become a large one in the time it takes you to read this sentence. Here are eight common fire hazards, provided by Alan Price, to keep in mind.

8 Common Fire Hazards
1. Walk away from something cooking in the kitchen:
The kitchen is often the most fire-prone room in the house. Unattended toasters & hotplates, dishes that are not microwave proof, cookbooks near naked gas flames are common causes of fires.

2. Let your electrical cords get worn out:
Frayed or chewed electrical cords start many house fires. Exposed electrical wires will light your floor or rug on fire in no time. Pets often chew on electrical cords as well, causing serious fire hazards.

3. Overload your power strips:
Overloaded power strips can also cause fire. When overloaded, they can spark. If they’re anywhere near anything flammable and in most homes they are – a fire is very likely.

4. Buy a malfunctioning electrical appliance:
Malfunctioning electrical appliances are a big source of fire. Most of us own more than a few electrical gadgets, all of which can malfunction at any time. Sparks from faulty toasters, coffee makers, televisions, computer monitors, or any electrical appliance you could name can cause serious fires.

5. Put something flammable near something hot:
Getting anything flammable near a source of heat is a quick way to start a fire. Some dangerous examples include lamp shades that rest too close to the bulb, clothes or curtains too close to a radiator, or any flammable material close to a space heater.

6. Leave a candle unattended- just for a minute:
Candles cause hundreds of fires every year. Even with a safe holder, candles should never be left unattended. It only takes a minute for a pet or child to knock a candle over – or just nudge it too close to flammable material

7. Use a fireplace or wood stove incorrectly:
Fireplace and wood stoves can be fire hazards when not properly used. Make sure your chimney is clear and clean before burning anything. Never throw away ashes that aren’t 100% cool- even the tiniest smoldering coal could easily start a fire in your trash bin.

8. Leave burning cigarettes unattended:
Cigarettes are a huge fire hazard. Smoking in bed, leaving a pipe or cigarette unattended, and emptying ashtray contents before they are cold cause hundreds of fires each year.

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