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electrical fire hazards

June 07, 2017 Safety

Keep Your Family Safe – How to Spot Electrical Fire Hazards at Home

Electrical fires in the home are one of the most preventable types of fires. Being able to spot and remove fire hazards at home is essential to keep your family safe and prevent injury or even death. The number of fires and deaths from house fires has dropped significantly since 2005 which means that many people are spotting potential fire hazards at home and removing the risk. However, in 2014, over 15,000 people were injured in home fires.[1] This means that there are still many deaths and injuries caused by fires that are preventable.

What can you do to keep your family safe from electrical fires at home? Here are our top 6 tips on fire safety in the home.

1 Qualified electrician

Always have a qualified electrician inspect the condition of the wiring if you move into a new home. Likewise, you should have your home electrical system, distribution panel, and circuit breakers checked every 5 years by a professional.

2 Circuit breakers

If you haven’t got them installed already, make sure that electrical appliances in your bathroom, kitchen, laundry room, and garage are connected to properly sized circuit breakers.

3 Check electrical cords

You should also make sure that any electrical cords and extension cables are in good condition. You should replace any cords that have breaks in them, are frayed, or are loose. Also, extension cords should only be used as a temporary measure to power appliances. Never run cords under carpets or in places where someone could trip on them.

4 Check connected outlets

You should also routinely check outlets and switches to make sure that they are not overheating or sparking when they get plugged in. If you see any burn marks around plugs, call your local electrician promptly to have the fault investigated.

5 Unplug unused appliances

It is a good habit to always unplug unused appliances to prevent fires in the home. This can help prevent night-time fires that can quickly spread while members of the family are sleeping.

6 Smoke alarms

You should have smoke alarms installed in each bedroom, top of the stairs and common area. Smoke alarms should be tested annually and replaced when they expire according to the date stamped on the bottom

Unfortunately, accidents do happen from time to time. However, by following our top 6 steps on identifying potential fire hazards, you can help keep your family safe from electrical fires.

Article sources:

  1. U.S. Fire Statistics by the U.S. Fire Department.
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