Fire prevention tips for a safe summer

Photo credit Phil Walter/Getty Images
By , KYW Newsradio

Summer comes with its own set of fire risks.

According to Philadelphia Fire Battalion Chief Thomas Kane, these common seasonal activities cause the most problems.

Outdoor cooking

Your grill can become a fire hazard without the proper setup.

“You want to make sure your grill is about 10 feet away from your house,” said Kane. “It could cause damage to your house and it could also catch fire.”

Many don’t realize, but mulch can also be incendiary — after all, it is fine, ground-up wood chips.

“Any kind of heat source, such as a cigarette, is going to give that the opportunity to catch fire. If you have a big old pile of mulch, you could also have spontaneous combustion.”


Some consider fireworks to be a holiday tradition, while others see them as an unsafe nuisance.

Kane said even sparklers that are often given to kids are more dangerous than you think.

“Sparklers, which seem very harmless, actually are hot enough to melt gold. So when you think about that and you’re handing the sparkler to your young child, that the amount of heat generated is so hot — the danger is there.

“I recommend, along with the Philadelphia Fire Department, that you do not purchase fireworks and display them at home,” he advised. “There’s going to be many displays out there, which are done by professionals.”

Carbon monoxide

During the summer, people obviously spend more time outside, but Kane said it’s also the time to take a second look inside your home.

“Change your filters in your heater,” he noted. “That’s something that often gets overlooked. Your hot water heater is going to be running. If it’s gas, there’s potential for a carbon monoxide issue.

“We recommend that everybody have at least one carbon monoxide detector in their home. That will save your life. And if you’re in an attached home, you can save the lives of your neighbor too.”

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Featured Image Photo Credit: Phil Walter/Getty Images