Causes of Fire
- Do not overload extension cords or run them under rugs.
- If an electrical appliance smokes or has an unusual smell, unplug it immediately, then have it serviced before using it again.
- Replace any electrical cord that is cracked or frayed.
- Do not tamper with your fuse box or use improper-size fuses.
- Careless smoking is the leading cause of fire deaths in North America. Oxford had a tragic fire in April 2005 where three Miami University students died. The fire investigation determined that smoldering ashes in a couch started the fire.
- Provide smokers with large, deep non-tip ashtrays and soak butts with water before discarding them.
- Before going to bed or leaving home after someone has been smoking, check under and around cushions and upholstered furniture for smoldering cigarettes.
- Keep portable heaters and space heaters at least three feet from flammables. Oxford had an apartment fire in fall 2005 that was caused by a bedskirt being too close to a floor heater.
- Never leave heaters on when you leave home or go to bed.
- Be especially careful with the use of candles. Never go to sleep or leave the unit with a candle burning. Check your lease, some landlords don’t allow burning candles in their units.
- Do not cook using the oven or stovetop if you are tired or have consumed alcohol.
- Do not leave food on stovetop unattended.
- Keep flammable items away from your stovetop while cooking.
Carbon monoxide is a colorless, odorless, tasteless gas and kills without warning. Some sources of carbon monoxide are fuel-fired furnaces, gas water heaters, generators, gas stoves, charcoal grills, lawnmowers and cars.
Initial symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning include:
- shortness of breath
If you suspect that you are experiencing CO poisoning, get fresh air immediately and call for assistance.