With the cold season sending everyone under the covers, the use of home heating has surely increased. While this could keep everyone at home warm, there are potential risks involved that you need to be aware of.

A news release from Vanderbilt University in Nashville, Tenn. outlined the things that could be done in order to keep the family safe during the cold season at home. It pinpointed that heating sources can become electrical hazards as well as fire dangers, and becoming aware of such risks can keep the family safe.

Purnima Unni, Monroe Carell Jr. Children's Hospital's pediatric trauma injury prevention program manager said that with the pandemic restrictions that have been in place, more people are now at home at a time when the home is normally empty. People would need to stay warm. For those who are not working, they are figuring out a way on how to keep warm during the cold season even with lesser income. With this, it could drive people to make use of heating sources that may not be the safest.

Unni noted that with more people at home, it is imperative for them to know which are safe heating sources, as well as those that are potentially hazardous.

Unni underscored the risk of carbon monoxide poisoning. This may result from malfunctioning furnaces and ranges, including room and water heaters. Charcoal burning in spaces that are enclosed may also cause poisoning.

Hospital experts stated that one way to prevent carbon monoxide poisoning is to have coal-burning appliances, gas, or oil, including fireplaces and chimneys, checked by professionals every year. Never try using an oven or a kitchen stove to heat the home. Make sure that the vehicle is not left running in the garage.

Another area that you need to be careful of is electrical hazards. Make sure that major electrical appliances have three-pronged cords, as this denotes that the appliance has the proper grounding. Humidifiers, vaporizers, and electric space heaters must be placed at least three feet away from the bed and curtains.

With loved ones staying at home most of the day, ensuring that they are safe will be of paramount importance. Never neglect heating and electrical safety this winter season.

Heating hazards during winter. Photo: Pixabay