Sunday cartoon: Keep space heaters away from exits

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BURRILLVILLE – It is very important to remember that putting space heaters near exits in any room is very dangerous for your entire family. Space heaters should be put far away from exits as well as exterior apartment and house exit doors.

If for some reason, there is a fire caused because of a space heater malfunction or due to improper care, and it is also blocking an exit, you could become trapped inside of that room with no way to escape. Keep all exits clear of space heaters, and anything else that might restrict access entering or exiting any room. Space heaters need to be placed at least three feet away from any objects in a room.

Never attempt to dry wet gloves, mittens, scarves or clothing worn while participating with outside winter activities on space heaters. It’s not safe. Those items can catch fire once they dry out. You also don’t want water melting onto an electric space heater in your apartment or house. Keep children and pets at least three feet away from space heaters to help prevent fires and unintentional burns to the body. Space heaters are extremely hot and can easily burn a pet or a child that ventures too close. Keep space heaters away from curtains, furniture, holiday decorations and Christmas trees.

Space heaters are designed to help keep you warm during the colder winter months, but can also become a fire and burn hazard if not used properly. Never plug a space heater into an extension cord with multiple plugs. Space heaters need to be plugged directly into an electrical wall outlet. Check all electrical cords for damage and never run any electrical cords under carpets or rug sectionals.

Stay warm and also stay safe during this holiday and winter season.

Jim Weicherding is a Burrillville resident, and the founder and creator of an award-winning traffic safety effort Seasons of Safety. Weicherding contributes kids’ coloring cartoons, which can be printed and used to help parents discuss safety issues with their children. He has a long list of police officers and firefighters in his family and has worked with law enforcement and firefighters in a creative public safety capacity for more than two decades.

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