December 1, 2017

Never plug space heaters into power strips

This is why you should never plug space heaters into power strips

When the temperature drops, you may feel the need to plug in that old space heater in your home or office.  But before you plug in that dusty space heater this winter, you'll want to read the following safety tip. Don't use extension cords and power strips!

The Umatilla County, in Oregon, Fire District #1 shares a photo of a fried power strip after a resident tried to plug a space heater into it.

Credit: Umatilla County Fire District #1

"You should never plug a heater into a power strip" warns the Umatilla County Fire District #1 in Hermiston, Oregon.  Posting the picture above on Facebook as a warning to prove their point.  "These units are not designed to handle the high current flow needed for a space heater and can overheat or even catch fire due to the added energy flow."

The post went viral with more than 17,000 shares.  Hundreds of people commented, some even sharing their own horror stories about space heaters.

"I had a household one catch on fire years ago," one Facebook user said.  "Good thing I woke up."

The Toledo Fire Department in Ohio also issued a warning Wednesday after battling a house fire caused by a space heater at 3 a.m. on Tuesday.  The flames erupted after the heater ignited a sofa.

While surge protectors ground electrical charges, experts say space heaters can get too hot too fast -- so the surge protector can overheat.

FEMA also produced a video to help get the point across.

#HeaterSafety With temps dropping nationwide, please share this video on how to heat your home safely. You may save a life! #FireSafety
— NorthportFireRescue (@NorthportFire) December 8, 2016

FEMA's video link is here.

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