Spokane Fire Department cautions residents to winter fire hazards

Spokane Fire Department cautions...

SPOKANE, Wash. - The Spokane Fire Department wants Spokane residents to be safe and warm this winter and holiday season, a season that brings joy to families but can also come with fire hazards. 

They say check your space heaters and to make sure they are in good working condition and don't have any carbon build-up in exhaust parts. They say if you can buy a space heater that shuts off when it tips over that is preferable. 

"All space heaters should have a three foot radius that is free of anything combustible," said Spokane Fire Department Battalion Chief David Heizer.  

He says as the weather turns cold, its a good idea to have your fireplaces checked and your chimney inspected for cracks and cleaned. 

Other cautions include making sure your fireplace is completely out before you go to bed for the night, disposing of ashes in a metal container that is stored away from the house and most importantly to make sure your house has a working fire alarm. 

For those who put up a tree during the holidays, Heizer says make sure you pick a tree that is green and doesn't have brown needles. 

He says its important to water your tree daily so that it doesn't become a fire hazard when covered in lights. 

As for the lights, he says check to make sure you are using the proper ones. 

"Check the lights, make sure inside lights are being used inside and outside lights are being used outside, they are designed for different purposes," he said.

He says you shouldn't overload any cords or plug too many lights into one cable. 

"It is always sad when you go out to these kinds of fire and see that they are very preventable," he said.