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Fire Safety Reminders for the Holiday Season

Winter usually brings concerns of the freezing cold and
frozen precipitation hitting the roads – but Fond du Lac Fire and Rescue is reminding
people of dangers inside their homes. Division Chief of Fire Prevention Troy
Haase is hoping for a safe holiday season. 

Haase says “the wreath
is up, it’s got all red lights on it – and it will stay up from Thanksgiving
until we get to the first of the year, and our goal is to keep all of the
lights red. If something causes a fire that’s Christmas-related or
holiday-related, then we’ll have to put a white bulb in it. So we don’t want to
put any white bulbs in. We’ve been very successful since that red wreath has gone
up, but I’ve got white bulbs sitting there ready to go.”

Thinking back, Haase believes it’s been about five or six years since he’s had to use the white bulbs. 

Haase tells us that the community safely made it through the most
likely day to have a cooking fire, but the next two on that list are just weeks
away. 

He says “we got
through Thanksgiving with the cooking, that’s the number one day – but we’ve
got Christmas Eve and Christmas Day then as the next two high, high cooking
fire-type things. So we want to make sure we’re always making sure we’re
staying clear of the stove. If you’re not cooking, don’t be in by the stove.
Keep a lid close if you’re frying so you can cover it up and put the fire out.”

Cooking is often a major cause of fires this time of year – but there are other concerns that may lead to a spark. Haase reminds residents that if you’re going to use a heater in your home –
there are a number of safety precautions to take before you even turn it on. 

He points out that you should “plug right
into the outlet, we don’t plug it into a cord. We put those three heaters on
that multi-plug into the extension cord, and within 5-7 minutes, it started
right on fire. It just melts and melts and melts until two wires touch, it
arcs, and then – we set it on a piece of carpet like you’d have in your house –
and it started the carpet on fire.”

Haase adds that everyone in the house should know their way out – or be briefed on an escape plan – especially when there are relatives staying over in a home they may not be completely familiar with.