Winter is officially here: use these tips avoid home fires

Over the weekend, Saturday (Dec. 21) in fact, was the first official day of winter. Although it might not feel like it out there – we are officially in the winter season. This is a good time to remind everyone that as temperatures remain cooler – and that eventually will happen – fire deaths across the state increase by almost 75 percent in Tennessee during this time of the year. 

Heating equipment is the leading cause of home fire deaths nationally and the second leading known cause in Tennessee. 

Remember – keep flammable items like blankets or furniture at least three feet away from space heaters and wood stoves, practice a home fire escape plan with your family, never smoke in a home where medical oxygen is present as the increased oxygen in the air makes fire burn hotter and faster, always turn off portable heaters when going to bed and never use the oven to heat your home. 

With the start of winter, it also means that days will start getting longer little by little.