Are You "Plugged In"?
A recent report from the U.S. Fire Administration (USFA) shows home electrical fires claim the lives of 280 Americans each year and also create over 1,000 injuries. Overloaded circuits and extension cords are the cause of most electrical fires in the home and workplace. December and January are the peak months for electrical fires. According to the USFA, the peak in fires is due to the increased time spent indoors, which also increases the use of lighting, heating and appliances. Many electrical fires can be avoided if the most basic safety precautions are taken.
- Routinely check your electrical appliances and wiring.
- Frayed wires can cause fires. Replace all worn, old or damaged appliance cords immediately.
- Replace any electrical tool or appliance if it overheats, shorts out, causes electrical shocks, or gives off smoke or sparks.
- If an appliance has a three-pronged plug, use it only in a three-slot outlet. Never force it into a two-slot outlet or extension cord.
- Use electrical extension cords wisely; never overload extension cords or wall sockets.