For Antigo Times
Last weekend, American Red Cross responders were called to multiple fires to provide health and emotional support, along with financial assistance for emergency needs such as food, shelter and clothing.
During extremely cold weather, the risk for a fire in someone’s home can increase. To avoid fire danger, you should remember the following:
- Never use a stove or oven to heat the home.
- If using a space heater, place it on a level, hard surface and keep anything flammable at least three feet away – things such as paper, clothing, bedding, curtains or rugs. Turn off space heaters and make sure fireplace embers are out before leaving the room or going to bed.
- If using a fireplace, use a glass or metal fire screen large enough to catch sparks and rolling logs.
- Use generators correctly – never operate a generator inside the home, including in the basement or garage.
- Don’t hook a generator up to the home’s wiring. The safest thing to do is to connect the equipment someone wants to power directly to the outlets on the generator.
- Wear layers of lightweight clothing to stay warm. Gloves and a hat will help prevent losing body heat.
- Someone should seek medical attention immediately if they have symptoms of hypothermia,including confusion, dizziness, exhaustion and severe shivering.
- Watch for symptoms of frostbite, including numbness, flushed gray, white, blue or yellow skin discoloration, numbness, or waxy feeling skin.
- Don’t forget family pets – bring them indoors. If they can’t come inside, make sure they have enough shelter to keep them warm and that they can get to unfrozen water.
- Avoid frozen pipes – run water, even at a trickle, to help prevent them from freezing. Open the kitchen and bathroom cabinet doors to allow warmer air to circulate around the plumbing. Be sure to move any harmful cleaners and household chemicals out of the reach of children. Keep the garage doors closed if there are water lines in the garage.
- Keep the thermostat at the same temperature day and night to help avoid freezing pipes.
- Download the Red Cross First Aid Appfor quick, expert advice on what to do in case of an emergency. This free app is available on the Apple iTunesor Google Play stores.