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Fire Chiefs Talk Fire Safety

In recognizing National Fire Prevention week, area fire chiefs provide safety tips.

The week of Oct. 7 marks National Fire Prevention Safety week and area firefighters were at area schools teaching fire safety to students.

"We talk to them about the dangers of overloading surge protectors, making sure pot handles are not hanging over the stove, stop drop and roll, and how to dial 911," said Westhampton Beach Fire Chief Chip Bancroft.

Aside from talking to kids, fire chiefs said that this week is also a good time to remind adults to change smoke and carbon monoxide detector batteries.

"With oil burners starting to fire up, carbon monoxide detectors start going off. We want people to know to get out of the house. Don't ignore the alarm," said Bancroft.

He added, "Carbon monoxide is one of the biggest problems — it is odorless and colorless. You will just get tired, lay down and never wake up."

In addition to replacing batteries in alarms, East Quogue Fire Chief Greg Celi, Jr. recommends that detectors should be cleaned and vacuumed out every six months.

Celi also reminded adults to check their homes to ensure that flammable items are moved away from furnaces and boilers or any other place that generates heat.

"Fire prevention is so important," said Celi. "We have to keep everyone educated, especially the kids."

One family activity Celi said to do this time of year is a fire drill, complete with a meeting place outside the home.

"Have an exit plan," Bancroft agreed.

And a final reminder from Bancroft: "Make sure you have an up-to-date fire extinguisher and learn how to use it properly."

For those who want to learn about basic fire extinguisher use, the Westhampton Beach Fire Department does offer classes. To find out more, click here.

Patch wants to know: How to you talk to your kids about fire safety? Do you have an exit plan?


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