To mark the start of National Fire Awareness Week, this is a good time to look at all the important signs that can cause a fire in your home. Some are obvious, but there are others that will surprise you.
The fact that the National Week of Fire Awareness occurs in the middle of winter is not a coincidence: winter is a good time for fires to occur in homes. But regardless of the season, people often do not think about all the factors that can trigger a fire in the place where they live. This may be the reason, why seven Americans die every day, on average, due to fires in the home, according to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA).
The risk of a fire is even more serious for those who live in buildings where heat, electricity and maintenance are handled by carefree and negligent owners, such as social housing or care. Unfortunately, there were 95,000 fires that destroyed residences built in 2015, resulting in 3,025 injuries and 405 deaths, according to the NFPA.
Even a single death, due to a fire in the home that could have been avoided, is too much. Luckily, each tenant has rights and the power to take the necessary security measures to avoid these accidents. This is why, in recognition of National Fire Awareness Week, we are sharing important fire and burn prevention tips for the whole family.
Take some time this week to watch out for these risks and inform your tenant, if necessary.
- Equipment for cooking and cooking
According to the National Fire Protection Association, the kitchen is the most prone place in your home for a fire to occur. Cooking is the main cause of all, which would surprise those who often use the stove or the oven. According to the organization, the kitchen equipment causes 46 percent of fires and 19 percent of deaths in homes, in addition to almost half of domestic accidents.
The biggest risk factors are the stoves and stoves, and in other circumstances when the food is neglected or fried. In these circumstances, objects such as kitchen towels and thermal gloves can trigger a fire, or even splashes of grease. Having good habits when preparing food is the key to keeping the kitchen safe.
However, sometimes the equipment may be the problem. Appliances, furnaces and other products used for kitchens or cleaning, which could be provided by the tenant, are sometimes deteriorated or are not in good condition.
Every tenant has the right to decent, safe and dignified housing, in accordance with the US Department of Housing and Urban Development. UU., Including those who live in Section 8 of housing. This also applies to the kitchen.
On the other hand, your oven, while heated, is not a substitute source of heat. This may seem safe, but it is also a threat, according to the authorities.
- Light bulbs
A simple light bulb can be a major cause of fire, especially when installed with the wrong size and voltage. An increase in voltage could cause the focus to overheat, make it explode and potentially generate a serious fire.
So what should be done if your bulb burns? When in doubt, call your tenant. If one of your bulbs burns, they should make sure that you chose the bulb with the right size and voltage, although it would be your responsibility as a tenant for the purchase of this.
However, in the case of common areas and corridors, it is generally the owner who is responsible for the purchase, replacement and maintenance of these bulbs. Remember, all tenants have the right to sporadic repairs and optimal maintenance, including tenants in Section 8.
Most people do not realize this, but every night, you can count on one of the main sources of fires in your home. According to the NFPA, children are often one of the causes of fires in the home, especially young children.
Fire is a natural attraction for anyone, but particularly for children, who are not familiar with it and are attracted to some of its characteristics. They usually have questions, such as: how hot is the fire? How is it generated with matches or lighters? Or how is the food cooked by it?
Teaching children about the factors that cause fires and how they start (certain clothes, bedding, and dolls), can be useful to prevent them from generating it. It may even be more practical to keep items such as matches and lighters out of reach, and make sure they are monitored when using some type of combustible material.
- Dryer for clothes
Having a washer and dryer unit in your apartment is a great convenience, but as a tenant, you are responsible for the basic maintenance of your dryer. Be sure to remove all accumulated lint before and after using your dryer, since lint is a common cause of fires.
Your tenant should also periodically check the drying hose on the back of your dryer, since a clogged hose can also increase the risk of a fire in your apartment. In fact, 2,900 fires per dryer have been reported each year and these fires have caused $ 35 million in annual losses, according to the US Fire Administration. UU
- Old electrical installations
Old wires may be behind their walls, hidden from view, but these should not be unnoticed. Older electrical systems are the biggest threat, since they do not have the capacity to withstand modern, high-energy appliances, so they end up creating electricity overloads. This can cause a fire.
An alarm indicator of some old installation, is to find the fuses burned. If you realize that your circuit breaker trips more than usual than it should, then it is time to call the property owner and have an electrical supervision of the installation of your apartment. After all, electricity fires occur in more than 50,000 homes each year, according to the NFPA.
What do I do if I am a victim of a burn injury?
First, the best way to protect yourself from a burn injury is by preventing fires in your home. Unfortunately, this is not always possible, especially if you live in a residential building managed by a negligent tenant.
If you or a loved one is a victim of a burn injury, because your landlord failed to maintain your home. Even if you believe you were responsible for the fire, you may receive compensation for medical expenses, pain and suffering, and more.