Saturday, February 13, 2010

Water Leaking Into Home Contributes to Fire

Chief Richard Bowers of the Montgomery County Fire and Rescue Service wants you to know that a serious fire occurred in Montgomery County yesterday. The fire last night was caused by an accidental electrical malfunction/failure of the electrical panel. A contributing factor was melting snow that leaked into the home and found its way to the electrical panel in the basement. Please take a moment to review the safety tips below to prevent this type of incident from happening to you and your loved ones.

• Clear areas around downspouts and drains so water from melting snow can flow away from your home. It also ensures melting snow does not accumulate and freeze in your gutters and downspouts thus creating an “ice dam.”

• Please Do NOT attempt to access your roof to clear the snow. Any person on the roof or performing work on the roof from below is risking injury and damage to the roof and house. It is important to contact licensed, bonded, and insured professionals to carry out this job!

• A sign that water may be impacting your electrical panel is if various breakers in the panel trip one or several times for no apparent reason. Turn your main circuit breaker to OFF and call a licensed, bonded, and insured electrician.

• If water has leaked into your home and threatens to come in contact with your electrical panel, please immediately turn your main circuit breaker to OFF. Contact a licensed, bonded, and insured professional company that deals in water damage and restoration to fix the leak as well as a call a licensed, bonded, and insured electrician!

• If your panel is sparking or you smell smoke or a burning odor, do NOT touch your panel! Immediately leave your home and call 9-1-1 from a safe location!

As always, please remember that working smoke alarms save lives! Test your alarms to make sure they are working! Make sure your family plans and practices a Home Fire Escape Plan! Know TWO ways out of every room and pick a meeting place outside where everyone will gather. Once you are out, STAY OUT!

For additional information or questions, please contact: Bill Delaney, Community Life Safety Education - @

“Together We Can Save Lives And Prevent Injuries”

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