Maine’s blaze chiefs and the accompaniment blaze align are abashed that history ability echo itself this winter.
State Blaze Align John Dean said the ammunition crisis in the mid-to-late ’70s acquired by the Arab oil embargo brought not alone continued curve at gas stations, but additionally added the use of copse stoves, electric amplitude heaters and carriageable kerosene heaters.
That about-face to addition means to accumulate balmy led to a billow in abode fires — and blaze deaths — in Maine, he said.
“We boilerplate about 20 blaze deaths a year actuality in Maine,” Dean said Wednesday. “When we had the embargo, bodies started afire copse who had never austere copse afore and we had blaze deaths in the 50s or more, and that was actual significant.”
This time around, he said, he can alone achievement bodies are added abreast about afire copse than they were in the 1970s.
One positive: Added bodies are application smoke detectors than anytime before, he said.
“But we do charge to get the chat out that bodies charge to be careful,” he said. “We’re abnormally anxious with bodies hooking up their copse stoves improperly. They charge to be installed accurately and vented into an unlined chase that is in actual acceptable condition.”
Burning blooming copse is addition concern, he said. With added bodies application copse to calefaction their homes, there is a curtailment of dry firewood.
Unseasoned or “green” copse abundantly increases the accession of creosote in the chimney. Creosote is a artefact of copse smoke and damp and is awful flammable.
“When a atom in a copse stove ignites it, it burns appropriate up through the chimney,” he said.
A blaze that hot can able a chimney, he said. If addition blaze occurs in that aforementioned chimney, bonfire will breach through the brick and move into the walls or attic space, potentially causing a anatomy fire.
Gardiner Blaze Chief Mark Kimball said chimneys in old homes are not consistently in acceptable shape. If bodies active in those homes are disturbing to pay their activity bills, they may attending to save money on maintenance.
“If you’re activity to bake wood, don’t be abashed to alarm the blaze administration and accept us appear and audit your stove to accomplish abiding you alpha out with a safe operation,” Kimball said.
Chelsea Blaze Chief Shawn Ramage said he’s already been on a chimney-fire call, and expects it won’t be his last.
To abstain chase fires, Ramage said, a copse stove should be installed by a professional. If it’s already absorbed up, alarm a bounded stove boutique that offers chase charwoman and assurance inspections and accept it serviced, he said.
“You can additionally analysis with the architect of your copse stove like Vermont Castings, which has all the analysis and accession advice online,” Ramage said.
He alleged best amplitude heaters acutely dangerous, abnormally ones with a aglow braid agnate to a toaster’s. They use a amazing bulk of activity and are awful burnable back they blow furniture, accouterment or draperies.
Belgrade Blaze Chief Jeff Stevens said his big affair is carbon monoxide contagion from heating accessories such as kerosene heaters.
“Anything to do with effluvium — K-1 heaters, copse stoves, alike propane heaters — annihilation that burns balance and is not aerial appropriately can put out carbon monoxide,” Stevens said.
He said bodies should install a carbon monoxide detector. Otherwise, baneful effluvium — which are absurd to see, aftertaste or aroma — can annihilate bodies afore they’re alike acquainted of the danger.
Dean said the National Blaze Protection Association urges bodies to use attention back application these devices, by cerebration fire-safety first.
And he said to analysis on neighbors, abnormally those who may not accept abundant money for fuel, the aged and physically handicapped.
“I apprehend we’re activity to put out advice from the governor’s appointment anon and appear up with a assurance account for bodies to admonish them to be decidedly acute this year,” Dean said.
Mechele Cooper — 623-3811, Ext. 408
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