Bottom Line: Fire safety tips for home

Published: Oct. 4, 2022 at 6:38 AM CDT
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MEMPHIS, Tenn. (WMC/CONSUMER REPORTS) - It’s something we don’t want to think about, but should: Making a plan now to keep our family safe from fire. And since October is National Fire Safety Month, the experts at Consumer Reports have some lifesaving tips that can help keep your home and family fire-safe.

Consumer Reports says it begins with a safety audit at home, starting in the kitchen. Cooking remains the leading cause of home fires and injuries. And it can be as easy as walking away from the stove and forgetting.

To prevent a kitchen blaze, remember this simple rule: Stand by your pan. If your cookware does catch fire, move it off the stove if you can and cover it with a lid.

For oven fires, keep the oven door closed, turn it off, and be sure to have a fire extinguisher nearby in case the fire gets out of hand. And part of your fire-safety plan should include an extinguisher on every level of your home.

Winter weather outside can present fire hazards inside. Think candles, fireplaces with uncleaned chimneys, and space heaters.

The vast majority of home heating deaths last year were the result of portable or stationary space heaters. CR recommends looking for a model that turns off automatically if it gets too hot and has a tip-over switch.

And finally, don’t forget about potential fires outside of your home. Many parts of the country are experiencing hotter and drier weather due to climate change, leaving homes susceptible to the risks of wildfires.

The risk goes beyond wildfires; backyard campfires and fire pits also pose risks—especially in drier weather. Before building a fire, check to make sure there are no local burn bans. And always have an extinguisher and a garden hose at the ready.

If you are in an area that’s at risk for wildfires, make sure the 5-foot area around your home is free and clear of mulch and other combustible materials.

“Consumer Reports TV News” is published by Consumer Reports. Consumer Reports is a not-for-profit organization that does not accept advertising and does not have any commercial relationship with any advertiser or sponsor on this site

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