Winter Safety Tips

Michele SfakianosUncategorizedLeave a Comment

Welcome to a new year! Now that the holidays are over we look forward to the promise of 2016.

More and more people are using outdoor fireplaces and chiminea (clay fire pit) than ever before. It is important to always remember that anytime you work with fire there is a chance of losing control of it or getting burned. If you are considering the purchase of one, always be aware of any regulations governing their use and any special considerations connected with a device with the potential for fire.

Make sure to check your state fire code for the use of outdoor fireplaces and chiminea to make sure they are legal for use in your area. Even if the device is legal, there can be certain restrictions that apply to their use. These restrictions can include:

  • Any situation where the smoke from one of these devices is objectionable or offensive to the community.
  • Using one of these devices for the disposal of waste or trash.
  • The use of one of these devices when it is left unattended for a period of time.
  • The use of one of these devices in a manner that is contrary to its intended use or manufacturer’s instructions.

General Safety

In addition to code requirements, if you plan to use outdoor fireplaces & chiminea, you should be aware of the general fire safety precautions for these devices.

  • Do not use any of these outdoor devices inside your home.
  • These units are not intended as a primary heating source.
  • Locate the device at least fifteen (15) feet away from any structure.
  • Maintain three (3) feet of clearance from any combustible material or item.
  • Do not use during a high wind condition.
  • Use some type of non combustible surface underneath to catch sparks, dropping coals, embers or ashes, i.e., a metal drop pan.
  • Never use gasoline, kerosene, starter fluids or any other substance that may create a rapid build-up of fire.
  • Properly dispose of the ashes once the fire is out.

Allow them to cool for 48 hours before disposing, otherwise, douse with plenty of water and never place them in plastic, paper or wooden containers, only metal.

Whether in sunny southwest Florida, or a chilly northern climate, please make every effort to keep you and your family safe. For more information on these and other life skills, make sure to check out my book “Ace Your Life.”

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