Chief's Blog

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Keep Your Family Safe this Thanksgiving

Did you know that cooking fires are the #1 cause of fires? 

More cooking fires occur on Thanksgiving than on any other day of the year. With Thanksgiving quickly approaching, Montgomery County Fire Chief Steven Lohr is urging residents to enjoy the Thanksgiving holiday and to keep safety at the top of everyone’s “to do” list this holiday season. “Whether you’re a seasoned chef or a rookie cooking your first holiday feast, the strategies for serving up a safe meal are the same,” said Chief Lohr. “Unattended cooking is the leading cause of residential fires and we’re asking residents to follow these simple safety tips and to have a happy and safe Thanksgiving holiday.

Cooking Safety Tips:

  • Be alert! Stay in the kitchen when using the stovetop and use a timer. If you must leave the kitchen, even for a minute, turn off the stove.
  • Keep anything that can catch fire at least 3 feet from the stove, toaster oven or other heat source. This includes pot holders, food packaging, dish towels, paper/plastic bags, etc.
  • Do not pour water on a grease fire. Pouring water on a grease fire can cause the fire to spread. In the event of a range-top fire, turn off the burner, put on an oven mitt and smother the flames by carefully sliding a lid or cookie sheet onto the pan. Leave the lid in place until the pot or pan has cooled.
  • Clean cooking surfaces regularly to prevent grease buildup which can ignite.
  • Always wear short, tight-fitting sleeves when cooking to prevent clothing from coming in contact with a burner and catching fire.
  • Do not hold children while cooking or carrying hot foods or drinks. Keep children at a safe distance from hot surfaces, liquids and other kitchen hazards.
  •  Plug microwaves and other kitchen appliances directly into an outlet. Never use an extension cord for a cooking appliance as it can overload the circuit and cause a fire.
  • Double-check the kitchen before you go to bed or leave the house. Make sure all other appliances are turned off and that any candles or smoking materials are safely extinguished.
  • Smoke alarms save lives. Install a smoke alarm on every level of your home, test alarms monthly and change batteries annually or as recommended by the manufacturer if your alarm features long-life batteries.

  • Turkey fryers are becoming an increasingly popular choice to cook the Thanksgiving turkey and can be extremely dangerous if proper precautions are not taken. If your plans include using a turkey fryer, fire department officials urge residents to follow all manufacturer directions closely and to review the following safety tips: 

    Turkey Fryer Safety Tips:

  • Never leave a fryer unattended.
  • By design, turkey fryers are prone to tipping over. Fryers should always be used on a non-combustible, flat surface to reduce accidental tipping.
  • Fryers should always be used outdoors at least 10 feet from buildings and any flammable materials. Never use a fryer on a wooden deck, under a patio cover, in a garage, porch or other enclosed space.
  • Do not overfill the fryer. The oil may spill out of the unit when the turkey is placed into the cooking pot. Oil may hit the burner/flames resulting in a potential fire hazard that could engulf the entire unit.
  • Oil and water do not mix! Make sure the turkey is completely thawed before it is placed in a fryer. Partially frozen turkeys can cause a spillover effect which may result in a fire. 
  • Some units do not have thermostat controls and, if not carefully watched, have the potential to overheat the oil to the point of combustion.
  • Use well-insulated potholders or oven mitts when touching the pot or lid handle. The sides of the cooking pot, lid and pot handles get dangerously hot and can result in severe burns. If available, use safety goggles to protect your eyes from any oil splatter.
  • Keep children and pets away from fryers. The oil can remain dangerously hot even hours after use.
  • Following these simple fire safety tips can boost survival rates and reduce injuries dramatically.  For more information about our fire safety programs or to request a free home safety evaluation or smoke alarm check, please contact the County’s non-emergency call center at 311 during business hours.

    Monday, November 24, 2014

    1st Battalion Paramedic Awarded EMS Provider of the Month for October

    By Battalion Chief Mark Davis

    Congratulations to Lieutenant Paramedic (LTP) Robert Furst (A-Shift Float) for being chosen by MCFRS's EMS Division as EMS Provider of the Month for October 2014. Lieutenant Furst was the primary care provider on a critically ill and combative patient. His work, along with his crew's efforts provided a successful outcome. In the photos below you will notice that in addition to a certificate, the EMS Provider of the Month also receives a beautiful challenge coin.

    In addition to his normal duties as a Float Lieutenant on the A-Shift in the 1st Battalion, LTP Furst also serves as a back-up EMS Duty Officer and as a guest lecturer at the County's training academy. 

    Excellent work LTP Robert Furst!







    Friday, November 21, 2014

    Graco Recalls 11 Models of Strollers Due to Fingertip Amputation Hazard

    Normally we post these types of recalls from CPSC via our Twitter or Facebook platforms.  But, this one is so large and impacts one of our most vulnerable populations, infants/toddlers, that I felt I should post additionally here.

    If you have a stroller of any kind, please take a moment to read below from our partners in safety at the CPSC and take the needed steps if you find you are in possession of one of these strollers.  As well, feel free to share this and help spread the word.

    BD

    Recall Summary

    Name of product:
    Aspen, Breeze, Capri, Cirrus, Glider, Kite, LiteRider, Sierra, Solara, Sterling and TravelMate Model Strollers and Travel Systems
    Hazard:
    The folding hinge on the sides of the stroller can pinch a child’s finger, posing a laceration or amputation hazard.
    Units
    About 4.7 million in United States, about 202,000 in Canada, and about 10,300 in Mexico
    Description
    This recall includes eleven Graco and Century-branded strollers with model names Aspen, Breeze, Capri, Cirrus, Glider, Kite, LiteRider, Sierra, Solara, Sterling and TravelMate.  All models are a single-occupant stroller with an external sliding fold-lock hinge on each side and a one-hand fold release mechanism on the handle. Strollers with a manufacture date from August 1, 2000 to September 25, 2014 are included in the recall. Model numbers and the date of manufacture are printed on the white label located at the bottom of the stroller leg just above the rear wheel. The model names and numbers included in the recall are:
    Aspen
          
    6947MAN
    6954AMB
    7403ANM
    7414BKL
    7453UVB
    7454WNN
     
           
    Breeze
          
    34950
    6904N8
    6904TN8
    6907JUN
    7404M7
    7404TM7
    7433BER
    6904BUG
    6904NV
    6904YL
    6907ZOU
    7404NCB
    7431PUR
    7464CEL
    6904LAZ
    6904TLQ
    6907CYP
    6932AR
    7404P8
    7432PUR
    7464KSB







    Capri - Century Branded Literider
        
    6901DZ
    6901FRN
    6901MP
        
           
    Cirrus
          
    35233
    6956COR
    6956MLL
    7426CUB
    7438JET
    7456NGS
     
    6919MV
    6956MAC
    7416HX
    7435WNN
    7456GKG
    7463CUB
     
    6919TMP
    6956MIC
    7416THX
    7438GIN
    7456MON
      
           
    Glider
          
    35206
    6974CYP
    6987FMT
    6S00MRG3
    7441SAV
    7446STA
    7S00SBN3
    1755545
    6974HAB
    6987FMT3
    6S01JAV3
    7441SAV2
    7448WLS2
    7S00WAV3
    1757978
    6983THE
    6987SFJ3
    6S02SFS3
    7441SPT
    7459KYW2
     
    6937N6
    6984SAR
    6999TRI
    7441FLT
    7445UNN
    7S00KWD3
     
           
    Kite
          
    6837COE
          
           
    Literider 
          
    1759206
    1834721
    6712NPB
    6903RG
    6927HE
    6942MP
    7304TOP2
    1759753
    1834725
    6712PWC3
    6912GMP
    6927HK
    6955G9
    7305ALB2
    1760521
    1843722
    6712SFT
    6916BLW
    6927LV
    6989N2
    7320UVB
    1761301
    1850503
    6712SNY
    6916BRN
    6927TMJ
    6989Y2
    7321UVB
    1763582
    1852558
    6712SUP
    6916D5
    6927TXB
    6M01TAN3
    7340SSR
    1783222
    1853477
    6712SUP3
    6916F3
    6929B7
    6M02SFR3
    7340SSR2
    1790492
    1876823
    6720THE
    6916HBH
    6929HX
    7003CHP
    7350DOH
    1794240
    34855
    6730BEB
    6916MEL
    6929KY
    7300MAK
    7350DOH2
    1801006
    34939
    6730DRM
    6916P8
    6929WN
    7303BRL
    7360NGS
    1804095
    35635
    6730HMP
    6916RK
    6936HAV
    7303BRL2
    7436GIN
    1809351
    6710JKP
    6827RS
    6916TA6
    6936JAM
    7304GEI
    7436JET
    1809556
    6710JUP
    6903IND
    6927AE
    6938A5
    7304GEI2
    7M00DCF3
    1817150
    6712NAP
    6903JJJ
    6927GP
    6940A4
    7304HNW3
     
           
    Literider - Century Branded
        
    1804730
          
           
    Sierra


      
    7487GP
    7487VA
         
           
    Solara - Century Branded Literider
        
    6965ZOL
    6985CNC
       

     
           
    Sterling
          
    6988KER
    7425CLE
    7425OAK
    7428RAC
    7429VL
    7437N5
    7447PAS
    7423RAC
    7425CLE2
    7427AD
    7429HX
    7429WZ
    7447M7
     
           
    TravelMate
          
    6958HAV
    6958TDT
         
    Incidents/Injuries
    Graco has received 11 reports of finger injuries including six reports of fingertip amputation, four reports of partial-fingertip amputation and one finger laceration.
    Remedy
    Contact Graco immediately for a free repair kit. Repair kits will be available from the firm at the beginning of December 2014. While waiting for a repair kit, caregivers should exercise extreme care when unfolding the stroller to be certain that the hinges are firmly locked before placing a child in the stroller. Caregivers are advised to immediately remove the child from a stroller that begins to fold to keep their fingers from the side hinge area.
    Sold at
    Target, Toys R Us, Walmart and other retail stores nationwide and online at Amazon.com, Walmart.com and other online retailers from August 2000 through November 2014 for about $40-70 for the stroller and about $140-$170 for the Travel System.  
    Manufacturer
    Graco Children’s Products, of Atlanta, Ga.  
    Manufactured in
    China