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Winter Storm Gail Forecast To Hit This Week

With the possibility of our first major winter storm this season arriving Wednesday into Thursday, it is important to remember a couple safety tips when it comes to snow. Some forecast models are showing over 11” of snow.

Keep Obstructions Away from Venting Systems

Here’s a super easy tip that can save lives and your heat from failing. Keep Snow Build Up Away from Venting Systems. Snowdrifts or a large snowfall can block your furnace or hot water heater exhaust pipe and cause it to stop working.

High efficiency furnaces, water heaters and other energy-saving appliances may have exhaust vents that exit your building through an exterior wall rather than through a chimney. These vents can become blocked in the winter

months by snow and ice, which can affect the safe operation of the appliance. Make sure that all snow, ice and other obstructions are removed from your venting systems. Drifting snow and caused a buildup of carbon monoxide inside of the house. It’ important to think plan for and take steps to keep snow build up away from venting systems. Make sure smoke and carbon monoxide detectors are installed and are in working order. Press the test button on the front of the detector to make sure it works.

Heat Your Home Safely

If you plan to use a wood stove, fireplace, or space heater, be extremely careful. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions and remember these safety tips:

  • Turning on the stove for heat is not safe; have at least one of the following heat sources in case the power goes out:

    • Extra blankets, sleeping bags, and warm winter coats

    • Fireplace that is up to code with plenty of dry firewood or a gas log fireplace

    • Portable space heaters or kerosene heaters. Check with your local fire department to make sure that kerosene heaters are legal in your area.

  • Use electric space heaters with automatic shut-off switches and non-glowing elements. Make sure to keep them away from any flammable materials, like curtains or blankets.

  • Use fireplaces, wood stoves, or other combustion heaters only if they are properly vented to the outside and do not leak gas from the flue or exhaust into the indoor air space.

  • Have your heating system serviced by a qualified technician every year.

  • Do not burn paper in a fireplace.

  • Make sure you have proper ventilation if you must use a kerosene heater.

  • Use only the type of fuel your heater is designed to use—don’t substitute.

  • Keep heat sources, like space heaters, at least 3 feet away from drapes, furniture, or bedding. Never cover your space heater.

  • Never place a space heater on top of furniture or near water.

  • Never leave children unattended near a space heater.

  • Make sure that the cord of an electric space heater is not a tripping hazard, but do not run the cord under carpets or rugs.

  • Avoid using extension cords to plug in your space heater.

  • If your space heater has a damaged electrical cord or produces sparks, do not use it.

Use Generators & Other Appliances Safely

  • Generators should be located at least 20 feet from any window, door, or vent and in a space where rain and snow will not reach them.

  • Never using generators, gas or charcoal grills, camp stoves, or similar devices inside your home, in basements, in garages, or near windows. The fumes are deadly.

  • Plug in appliances to the generator using individual heavy-duty, outdoor-rated extension cords.

  • Do not use the generator or appliances if they are wet.

  • Do not store gasoline indoors where the fumes could ignite.

If you see a fire hydrant that is completely blocked by snow, we would appreciate if you could clear the area around the hydrant. Fire hydrants are our number one resource for water in case of a fire.

Be Safe!


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