OLATHE, Kan. — As heaters and furnaces are switched on and homes are filled with holiday décor, the Olathe Fire Department is reminding the community to take extra precautions when heating their homes this season.
“As it gets cold, we do see that seasonal change in what are starting the fires," said Captain Mike Hall, Olathe Fire Department.
According to the National Fire Protection Association, home heating fires are the second leading cause of house fires in the country, second only to cooking fires.
“Wood stoves, fireplaces, are a lot like a furnace. Before you start using it, make sure that you get it checked by a professional," said Hall.
Fluesbrothers Chimney Services in Kansas City, Kansas receives more than 50 calls per day.
“People put things off, or they don’t realize the hazards and dangers that could exist with the fireplace and they take it for granted," said Jeremy Biswell, Owner.
Local fire experts said maintaining smoke detectors, cleaning your chimney, and handling ashes correctly are all simple steps to take to be safer from a fire.
“We found them in plastic trash cans in the garage, they thought they were cool, moved them out there and then actually the fire started inside that plastic bin and then spread to whatever vehicles were in there, the garage, and then to the house," said Hall.
On Christmas morning, be sure not to throw any wrapping paper or trash into the fireplace.
“It’s not an incinerator, you only burn wood, not trash, paper, things like that," said Biswell.