Fire deaths high in Ohio for 2015

REYNOLDSBURG — Eight people have been killed in fires so far in November

While the number of fire deaths is still nine percent higher than this time last year, less people were killed in fires so far this month than in November 2014. Eight people have been killed at this point in November, compared to 12 last year. That brings the yearly total to 108.

Although there has been a decrease thus far in November, any loss of life is too much. State Fire Marshal Larry L. Flowers asks Ohioans to be vigilant in their fight against these deadly fires.

“The above average temperatures in November allowed Ohioans to rely less on heating sources in their homes,” Marshal Flowers said. “However, we are entering into the coldest months, and it’s important that we be more aware than ever of potential fire risks in our homes and eliminate them.”

The Safe & Sound public awareness campaign was kicked off in early October with a goal to reverse the trend of fire deaths during the winter months. Home heating fires are most likely to happen during this time of the year. With some preparation, you can ensure your family is safe from the threat of fire.

Here are some tips to keep in mind, especially with the holidays coming up:

• Do not block your primary or alternative escape routes with a tree, decorations or presents.

• Live Christmas trees should be as fresh as possible and watered daily.

• Stay in the kitchen when you are cooking so you can keep an eye on the food.

• Do not overload electrical outlets or extension cords.

• Plug space heaters directly into the wall.

• Keep flammable objects at least 3 feet from any heat source.

• Do not use the kitchen oven range to heat your home.

• Turn heaters off when you leave a room.

• Install a smoke alarm on each level of the home, inside and outside of each bedroom.

• Have a fire escape plan with two ways out.

The Department of Commerce and State Fire Marshal’s office have several partners to help fight this trend. The Ohio Departments of Administrative Services, Aging, Agriculture, Public Safety, Development Services Agency and the Division of Real Estate & Professional Licensing are taking an active role in Safe & Sound. The American Red Cross is also assisting with the campaign.

For information about the campaign and more fire safety tips, visit the state fire marshal’s website or Twitter page.

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