The bedroom is where about half of home fire deaths occur. That’s also where most electrical fires start in a home. These facts are alarming for most homeowners, but they can easily prevent bedroom fires by following these essential safety tips:
- Electric cords should not be run under the bed or carpeting, or trapped against a wall where heat can build up. Cords should also be kept untangled to allow heat to dissipate. Overloading an extension cord should be avoided.
- Space heaters must always be supervised and turned off when leaving the bedroom or going to sleep.
- Arc fault circuit interrupters (AFCIs) should be installed in the home to prevent fires in electrical switches. They shut off the circuit when an unintentional discharge of electricity occurs in the circuit.
- Tamper resistant receptacles (TRRs) should be installed in all rooms if there are children living in the house. These devices prevent them from inserting foreign objects like hairpins into the outlet.
- Devices that are charging should never be put under bedding. Leaving a laptop on the bed can also cause a fire.
- Electric blankets and warmers must be laboratory-approved and checked regularly for damage. These devices should not be folded as it may damage the wiring. Electric blankets must be turned off before going to sleep.
- Flammable objects must be kept at one metre away from heat sources such as space heaters, candles, and electronics.
- Lit candles must be kept away from combustible objects like bedding, curtains, and paper. Battery-operated flameless candles are much safer to use.
- Mattresses must meet the flammability requirements for textile products.
- Smoking in bed should be absolutely avoided. There’s the risk of falling asleep with a lit cigarette in the hand, which could light the bedding on fire.
- Smoke alarms should be installed inside and outside each bedroom. Alarms should be tested monthly and replaced every 10 years. Batteries need to be replaced at least once a year.
- A fire escape plan should be put in place. Each room must have two exits, and everyone in the home must practice the fire drill at night and during the day twice a year.
Using electrical devices incorrectly can result in home fires, so here are more home electrical safety tips. For additional fire safety tips, here’s how to prevent fires in the kitchen, backyard, apartments, and entertainment facilities. The PuroClean team stands ready to provide professional restoration services to any property affected by fire, water or mould damage.
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June 1, 2018