JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – At a time when it’s normal for Floridians to break out the heaters, News4Jax has some safety reminders for you.
Over the weekend, two men were found dead in a home in the Riverview neighborhood. Loved ones of one of those men said a heating device could be to blame.
The wife of one of those men who died told News4Jax that police said carbon monoxide poisoning could be the killer. However, they are still waiting on autopsy results for an exact cause. Neighbors are calling the deaths are horrible accident.
That’s why News4Jax wants to remind you of different ways to safely warm your home.
While some turn to their fire place, others have space heaters or furnaces. Regardless of which heating source you use, it’s important to make sure you’re keeping safety a top priority.
“Any sort of heater that you have in your home, you want to make sure that it’s maintained, that it’s inspected, and used properly,” said Randy Wyse, President of the Jacksonville Association of Firefighters.
Terry Thomas with Proctor Ace Hardware said don’t overload your outlet or you’ll risk blowing a fuse, tripping a breaker, or even starting an electrical fire.
“Whatever outlet you plug these in, don’t plug anything else in it. Just one thing - the heater. As long as it’s 1500 or above- that’s the only thing that needs to be plugged into the outlet to keep from starting an electrical hazard,” said Thomas.
Firefighters encourage keeping at least three feet between your heat source and anything that could be flammable-like blankets, curtains, or plastic.
Also, double check to see if your heater is meant for spaces inside or outside. The difference could be deadly.
“If you go to sleep when you have a large build-up of carbon monoxide in your home or anywhere where you are, your garage or anything like that, it can prove fatal,” said Wyse.
Carbon monoxide is known as a silent killer—you can’t see it or smell it. No matter what source of heat you have in your home, a fire and carbon monoxide detector can serve as your first line of defense.