Fire Prevention Tips 2024

West Carrollton Fire Department Fall Fire Safety Tips:

October is fire safety month where we practice our home or business fire drills and go to a safe place ensuring all occupants are out of the structure as we arrive.

November 5, 2023 is time change where we fall back one hour. This is the time to verify the smoke alarms work in the home and that you have the smoke alarms placed in each bedroom, one smoke alarm outside of the bedroom in the hallway and one on each floor of the home. A carbon monoxide alarm is now required in the hallway outside of the sleeping rooms.

Every bedroom requires two way out. The door to the hallway and a window to the outside are your means of escape. If you live on the second floor, each bedroom should have an escape ladder for exiting purposes. If you have any questions concerning the placement or operation of a smoke alarm, or need a free fire escape ladder, contact the West Carrollton Fire Department at 937-847-4645.

Fall and Winter time is the time to use the fireplaces, furnace, and back yard firepits. These can all be used safely by following a few fire tips to keep you and your property safe.

Fireplaces inspections;

Have your firebox and chimney inspected at least once per year for cracks and obstructions.

Don’t let creosote buildup in your chimney.

Never burn paper documents, trash or charcoal in your fireplace. It gives off deadly carbon monoxide and will increase the soot buildup in the flue. Have a carbon monoxide detector in the hallway of the sleeping areas

Make sure the damper is open during the use of the fireplace and stays open if there are hot ashes remaining in the firebox for at least 24 hours after using. Closing the damper could enable hot ashes to heat up.

When you clean or remove the ashes, place them in a metal container to the outside on solid ground for at least 24 hours. Dowse the ashes with water if possible. Do place the container of ashes on a wood or combustible deck.


Before you turn on your furnace, have it inspected yearly by a qualified professional. September is a good month to have the furnace inspected.

Check the condition of the automatic controls and emergency shutoffs. Know where your electrical panel is for the furnace, breakers or fuses are marked. Keep at least a three-foot clearance around the panel and do not cover the panel with pictures or curtains.

Replace the furnace filter each month, keep all trash and combustibles 36-inches away from the furnace, check your chimney for cracks or loose bricks and seal all unused flue openings.

Space Heaters;

Verify that your space heater has a working safety light, automatic shut-off switch or tip-over shut-off device.

Keep all objects, combustible material, people and pets at least 3-feet away from the space heater.

Never use a space heater in your bathroom. Water and electric appliances don’t mix.

Dryer Vent Fire Prevention;

Clothes that no longer feel dry to the touch after a normal dry cycle are signs that the dryer is not working correctly. Before doing the next load, check for a plugged vent and clean out any lint.

Place a smoke or heat alarm near or above the dryer, using a 10-year-rated battery.

Do not leave your dryer running when you leave the house and do not leave your dryer running when you go to bed.

Clean the entire vent system two or more times a year and clean the lint filter after every dryer load. If you cannot clean or unable to clean the vest, call a professional vent cleaner.

Recreational Fires;

Before starting a recreational fire, talk to your neighbors, tell them what you are doing. After that, contact the Centerville Dispatch’s non-emergency number, 937-428-4780.

If the fire is found to be unattended or irresponsible burning endangers the safety and welfare of the public, or there is a neighbor’s dispute, the rec fire will be extinguished.

Following the 2017 Ohio Fire Code which dictates that recreational fires must be;

No larger than 2 feet in width and 2 feet in height

Supervised at all times by someone 18 years or older

Made with only clean, dry wood. (No trash or yard waste)

Located at least 25 feet from a structure or combustible material, including wood or vinyl fences.

A hose, water bucket, garden hose or fire extinguisher should be accessible for extinguishment.

Contained within a pit, fire ring or commercial fire pit.

Extinguish the hot coals when finished and then leave the hot coals alone for at least 24 hours. Do not bag or dispose of the ash or coals in a garbage container until you know they are thoroughly out. Same as cleaning a fireplace, dowse the ashes with water if possible and do not place the hot coals on a wood or combustible surface.

NFPA Christmas Safety;

Keep the tree at least three feet away from any heat source, like fireplaces, space heaters, candles, and heat vents and do not place the tree in an exit path.

If you prefer a live tree, choose a tree with fresh, green needles that do not fall off when touched. Before placing the tree in the stand, cut 2” from the base of the trunk.

Add water to the tree stand. Be sure to add water daily.

Use bulbs or LED lights that have the label of a recognized testing laboratory (UL/FM). Follow the manufactures directions when using.

Replace any string of lights with worn or broken cords or loose bulb connections and follow the manufacturer’s instructions for number of light strands to connect.

Turn off the Christmas tree and decorative lights before leaving home or going to bed.