Thursday, May 17, 2012

Fire Damage Can Be Prevented

Surviving a conflagration is cause for celebration. The risk of smoke inhalation, carbon monoxide poisoning, and disorientation are bad enough without even considering the danger of burning from flames and heat. Even after the immediate danger has passed and the home is safe to return to there is still a serious risk of illness from accumulated chemicals and residual gases. Basically, in order to reduce one's risk to life and limb it is best to prevent these blazes entirely. Fortunately, it is easy to know the ways that fire damage typically occurs and to do what is possible to reduce the risk.

The first and most common way that fire damage happens is through accidents. Combustion is a fairly simple chemical reaction. It is simply the interaction between oxygen and a fuel source. Now, the fuel source can be many different things. Sometimes it is carpeting or furniture, but occasionally it is things that one would not think of like appliances and cabinetry. Usually what happens is that there is a heat source that inadvertently ignites the fuel. This could be a candle that falls on a tablecloth or the floor. Other times it is unpredictable problems like a lampshade catching flame and igniting a drape. Whatever the case, an accident occurs from failure to pay close attention to potentially incendiary situations. The simple solution to this problem is to blow out candles when you leave a room or go to sleep and to turn off lams when they are not in use. Also, pay attention to items near the stove and to cigarette ashes. It is impossible to predict all the possible sources of ignition, but diligence will go a long way toward preventing most of them.

The next most common source of fire damage is equipment failure or malfunctions of appliances. This can happen for a number of reasons. Sometimes care is not taken to be sure that electrical cords are not frayed or damaged. Other times an outlet will be improperly grounded and will short and cause a spark. In some situations poor maintenance can cause an appliance to work overly hard to operate at normal capacity and force it to heat up and cause a potential risk situation. In order to prevent these problems it is necessary to periodically inspect and clean all electrical outlets and appliances to remove dust and debris and make sure they are not in need of repair.

Simply put the best way to prevent fire damage is by preventing things from catching flame in the first place. A little prevention and some regular attention and maintenance can protect not only one's property but also their lives and the lives of their loved ones.

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