New Canaan Fire Marshal Issues Safety Tips

Each year over 2,500 people die in fires, most of them in residential occupancies.  National Fire Prevention Week is October 3 to 9 this year and the theme is “Learn the Sounds of Fire Safety.” Fire Service throughout the country will be working to emphasize fire safety awareness as will the New Canaan Fire Department. Firefighters will be visiting schools throughout town giving demonstrations on how to stay fire safe.  Also, school, church and scout groups will be touring the fire house to learn about how the firefighters live, train and work.  

Following is a list of general fire safety tips to help stay safe at home:

First and foremost, have smoke detectors installed on each level of the home and inside of each sleeping room and make sure they have fresh batteries at least once per year.  If over 10 years old, they should be replaced. New 10 year detectors that do not required battery changes are best for replacement. 
Install CO (carbon monoxide) detectors on each level of your home to protect you and your family for the “silent killer”. If a pot on the stove catches fire, turn off the burner and cover with the lid or a cookie sheet to smother the fire.  Never try to carry the pot to the sink or outside and never use water.

New Canaan Fire Marshal: Fire Safety at College

Many young people are heading off to college – some for the first time. It is a time of big change for first-time collegians beginning the next stage in their lives. Fire safety is probably the last thing that families are thinking about as they head off to college but it is very important. Even more critical is “off-campus” housing that may not be covered by campus housing rules. The New Canaan Fire Marshal’s Office would like to offer important fire safety tips to help keep these students safe:

Ensure that each sleeping room is equipped with operable smoke detectors. 
Candles are a leading cause of campus fires – never burn candles or other open flame devices in dorm rooms or common areas. 
Never use extension cords in place of proper, permanent wiring. 
If given the choice, opt for a dorm/living quarters equipped with automatic fire sprinkler systems. 
Know all ways out of your room/dorm and, where each exit discharges.  Take a few minutes to walk the routes to familiarize yourself. 
Always follow all directions and guidelines of the school and participate in fire drills as directed. 
Learn your address so if you have to call 911 on your cell phone you can give the proper location. 
Learn the location of fire alarm pull stations and the sound of the alarm system. 
Never cook in your room, cooking related issues are another common cause of dorm fires. 

The New Canaan Fire Marshal’s Office wishes all young adults heading off to new frontiers a happy and safe future. 

New Canaan Fire Marshal: Stand-By Generator Hazards

As we deal with hurricane season it is a good time to review generator safety. Past experiences show that many residents have generators at their homes that—if not installed and used properly—can pose a serious threat. The primary hazard is carbon monoxide (CO) poisoning from the toxic engine exhaust. 

Following is a list of do’s and don’ts for portable and stationary generator use and installation:

Make sure that a building permit has been obtained from the Building Department for the installation of a standby generator. When choosing generator location, make sure it is located a minimum of 10 feet from any building opening (windows, doors etc). Close all windows adjacent to the generator to prevent toxic fumes from entering the home.

New Canaan Fire Marshal Issues Fireworks Safety Tips

With warm weather and family events the Fourth of July can be a fun time with great memories. But before your family celebrates this year, the New Canaan Fire Department wants to make sure everyone knows about fireworks safety. Only sparklers and “shower” type fireworks are legal to sell and use in Connecticut.  No aerial or exploding type fireworks are permitted to be sold or used in the state. Only persons 16 years and older may use the above fireworks. Always keep at least 30’ away from spectators and structures.

New Canaan Fire Marshal Issues ‘Gas Grill Safety Tips’

The New Canaan Fire Marshal’s Office offers the following information for residents with the upcoming outdoor cooking season. 

Gas Grill Safety Tips

Always follow manufacturer’s instructions for assembly, operation, maintenance, repair and storage.  Consult owner’s manual. 
Always turn control knobs to off and tank valve to closed when not in use. 
Inspect grill and tank before each use for damage or wear. Replace worn grill parts as needed, especially hoses and regulators. 
Using soapy water, check tank and valve for leaks. Open the valve, but leave the appliance off while testing. 
Before lighting grill, always open grill lid. 
Never move a grill that is in use. Never store a spare tank beneath a grill. 
Never store or use flammable liquids, like gasoline, near the grill. 
Keep grills at least 3 feet away from structures and other combustibles. 
Gas grills should not be placed on balconies. Grills are prohibited on decks and balconies in apartment buildings. 
Never use gas or charcoal grills indoors. When transporting tanks for refilling they must be kept in the upright position and secured against “rolling around”. Tanks should never be transported in trunks due to the heat that can build up in the sun.