Mariposa county fire department call log_ march 14 – march 20, 2016

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Mariposa County Fire Department supports the county with 14 volunteer stations located throughout the county. If you are 18 years of age and possess a valid CA driver’s license, we would love to hear from you! Positions are available for fire, medical, and various support duties. No experience necessary – we will train you! – Please call (209) 966-4330 today for more information! Safety Tip: Fire Safety Tips for Pet Owners

Pets give us comfort, friendship, and unconditional love. Our connection to them can be among the strongest relationships in our lives. But pets can cause fires. According to NFPA, pets and wild animals have a part in starting about 700 home fires per year.

Pets are curious. They may bump into, turn on, or knock over cooking equipment. Keep pets away from stoves and countertops.

Keep pets away from candles, lamps, and space heaters. Consider battery-operated, flameless candles. They can look and smell like real candles.

Always use a metal or heat-tempered glass screen on a fireplace and keep it in place.

Keep pets away from a chimney’s outside vents. Have a “pet-free zone” of at least 3 feet (1 meter) away from the fireplace. Glass doors and screens can stay dangerously hot for several hours after the fire goes out.

Some pets are chewers. Watch pets to make sure they don’t chew through electrical cords. Have any problems checked by a professional.

Make sure pets are included in your family’s wildfire evacuation plan. Build an evacuation kit for each pet in your household. Ensure each kit is a size and weight that can be quickly and easily loaded into a vehicle when packing to evacuate.

As a reminder, always have working smoke alarms on every level of the home. Test your smoke alarms at least once a month. If the smoke alarm sounds, get out and stay out. Never go back inside for pets in a fire. Tell firefighters if your pet is trapped.

Helpful Information from Mariposa County Fire Department

Carbon Monoxide Can Be Deadly!

You can’t see or smell it, but at high levels it can kill a person in minutes. Carbon monoxide (CO) is produced whenever any fuel such as gas, oil, kerosene, wood, or charcoal is burned. If these fuel burning appliances are not working properly or are used incorrectly, dangerous levels of CO can result. Hundreds of people die accidentally every year from CO poisoning. Fetuses, infants, elderly people, and people with anemia or with a history of heart or respiratory disease can be especially susceptible.

Here are some tips to stay safe:

* Install a CO alarm that meets the requirements of the current UL 2034 standard.

* Never use a generator or any gasoline engine – powered tool in an enclosed space.

* Never burn charcoal inside a home, garage, vehicle, or tent.

* Never leave a car running in an attached garage, even with the garage door open.

* Never use gas appliances such as ranges/ovens, or clothes dryers to heat your home.

* Do not cover the bottom of natural gas or propane ovens with aluminum foil. Doing so blocks the air flow through the appliance and can produce CO.

* Never use fuel-burning camping equipment in an enclosed space unless it is specifically designed to do so and provides instructions for safe use in enclosed areas.

Stay warm and stay safe!

Winter is upon us so please use caution while on the roads.

1. Decrease your speed and leave yourself plenty of room to stop. You should allow at least three times more space than usual between you and the car in front of you.

2. Brake gently to avoid skidding. If your wheels start to lock up, ease off the brake.

3. Turn on your lights to increase your visibility to other motorists.

4. Keep your lights and windshield clean.

5. Use low gears to keep traction, especially on hills.

6. Don’t use cruise control or overdrive on icy roads.

7. Be especially careful on bridges, and infrequently traveled roads, which will freeze first. Even at temperatures above freezing, if the conditions are wet, you might encounter ice in shady areas or on exposed roadways like bridges.

8. Don’t assume your vehicle can handle all conditions. Even four-wheel and front-wheel drive vehicles can encounter trouble on winter roads.

Stay Safe!

SMOKE ALARMS SAVE LIVES!!

Keep in mind that… smoke alarms can only warn you IF they are working.

Two-thirds of reported residential fire deaths occurred in homes with NO working smoke alarms.

The National Fire Protection Agency states that the reason smoke alarms failed to operate in reported home structure fires were;

Almost half (47%) of the smoke alarms had missing or disconnected batteries.

One-quarter (24%) of the smoke alarm failures was due to dead batteries.

Only 7% of the failures were due to hardwired power source problems,

Including disconnected smoke alarms, power outages, and power shut-offs.

Remember, you are putting your family’s lives in the hands of a small mechanical device. Keep them clean, change the batteries twice a year, and test it once a month. Your life could depend on it!

Preparing for Cold Weather

It’s the time of year when people are starting to use their furnaces, space heaters, fireplaces and woodstoves to keep them warm as the temperatures start to drop. Poorly maintained furnaces and alternative forms of heat are major causes of house fires and also can cause carbon monoxide poisoning.

Chimneys and woodstoves should be checked annually for cracks and debris. For your furnace, an annual inspection and cleaning is recommended to check for cracks in the combustion chamber, which could allow carbon monoxide to leak into a residence.

Carbon monoxide is a colorless, odorless gas that is usually vented away from the furnace area. If allowed to collect, carbon monoxide can cause flu-like symptoms, disorientation, confusion and death.

If using a portable space heater be sure electric circuits can handle the additional load. Putting more than one heater on the same circuit may overtax the system and cause a fire hazard.

Fireplace Safety – Proper Ash Disposal

With the onset of colder weather, we are again confronted with the problem of improper ash disposal. Many people do not realize the length of time required for ashes to cool enough for disposal. Even after several days, a pile of ashes can hold enough heat to reignite and start a fire.

* Make sure there are no hot spots left in the ashes by soaking them in water or letting them sit for at least four days.

* All ashes should then be stored in a fire-resistant metal container with a tight fitting cover. They should NEVER be disposed in a plastic garbage can, a cardboard box, or paper grocery bag. Never use a vacuum cleaner to pick up ashes.

* The metal container should be placed away from anything that can burn. It should not be placed next to a firewood pile, in the garage, on or under a wood deck, or under a porch.

* After sitting for a week in the metal container the ashes are then safe to dispose of in your trash. Driving Reminder

Mariposa County Fire Department would like to remind you to limit possible distractions that could take your attention away from driving. When driving at high speeds on our mountain roads it is of the utmost importance you concentrate on the roads, your vehicle and the weather conditions. A distraction of just a split second can be disastrous.

Thank You