Putting safety first this month
and throughout the year
It's May - and Wood County Electric Cooperative is celebrating National Electrical Safety Month. While safety for our members is top priority year-round, May is a good time to acknowledge the importance of safety in the home.
Electricity is the cause of over 140,000 fires each year, resulting in more than 500 deaths, 4,000 injuries and $1.6 billion in property damage, according to Electrical Safety Foundation International (ESFI).
Don't be a statistic. Use these helpful tips from ESFI to safeguard your home.
In the kitchen
- Vacuum refrigerator coils every three months to eliminate dirt buildup that can create fire hazard.
- Ensure all countertop appliances are located away from the sink.
- All appliance cords should be placed away from hot surfaces. Pay particular attention to cords around toasters, ovens, and ranges. Cords can be damaged by excessive heat.
- Keep combustibles such as potholders and plastic utensils clear of the cooking range surface. Storing these items in or near the range may result in fires or burns.
Light the way to safety
- The wattage of the bulbs you use in your home should match the wattage indicated on the light fixture. Overheated fixtures can lead to a fire.
Check lamp cords to make sure they are in good condition - not damaged or cracked. Do not attempt to repair damaged cords yourself. Take any item with a damaged power cord to an authorized repair center.
Extension cords should never be used to provide power on a long-term or permanent basis. Have additional receptacles installed by a professional to provide power where needed.
- Nearly two-thirds of fire deaths result from fires in homes without working smoke alarms. Smoke alarms should be located on every level of your home, inside each bedroom and in the immediate vicinity outside each bedroom.
Test smoke alarms every month. Batteries should be replaced at least once a year - or sooner if indicated in the manufacturers' instructions. All smoke alarms should be replaced at least every 10 years.
Talk to your family about an emergency plan in the event of a fire in your home.
Electrical safety awareness and education can save lives. For more tips and information about electrical safety, visit the Safety & Consumer Tips section of our website.