Safety Tips for Emergency Lighting and Heating During Power Failures
If you use candles, never leave them unattended and place them out of reach of young children. Candles should be placed in solid, secure candle holders and protected by a glass chimney. Try to avoid walking with a lit candle or taking it into a closet to look for things. This is very dangerous, so use a flashlight. Never leave a child alone with a candle or oil lamp.
Keep oil lamps away from combustibles and out of the wind. Make sure they are kept in a secure place where they cannot be knocked over. Before going to bed make sure that all candles and lamps have been put out.
Matches & Lighters
Keep all matches and lighters out of sight and reach of children, preferably in a locked cabinet.
Home Safety Tips
- If a wire falls across your car while you're in it, don't get out. Wait for a line crew to come and safely remove it. Remember, both the car and the ground around it may be electrified.
- If your electrical panel uses fuses, always replace a fuse with the right amperage fuse. Never substitute a higher amp fuse where a smaller one is called for, since this poses a fire hazard.
- When your home or cottage was built, the electrical installation was inspected to ensure that it met the Electrical Safety Code at the time. Keep your wiring safe. If you add to it, be sure to have an electrical inspection.
- Never replace a burnt out fuse with a coin, even as a temporary measure. Doing so could start a fire.
- It's important to use cords properly and keep them well maintained. Electrical cords are insulated to protect you from the electricity running through the wires inside. When an appliance or tool is on, these wires are "live" and could cause shock upon contact. Never use a tool or appliance with a frayed cord or where the insulation is nicked and wires are exposed.
- Never break off the third prong of a plug. The third prong (the round one) is a grounding wire put there for your protection; it provides a ground path that helps prevent or minimize shocks. Rather than breaking it off to fit an older outlet, replace a two-prong outlet with a three-prong one and make sure the third prong is properly grounded.
- Avoid "octopus outlets"! Clusters of wires and plugs may mean your electrical system can't cope with your energy needs. It may be time to rewire and add circuits.
- Be careful in the bathroom and near sinks; radios, hairdryers and other electrical appliances are hazardous if you use them near water. If your hands are wet or if you're standing on a damp floor, you could get a serious electrical shock. Any plugs that are near sources of water should be GFCIs (Ground Fault Circuit Interrupters).
- Clothes dryers consume a lot of energy. Wait until evening or the weekend and you'll pay a third of the cost.
- Set your air conditioner a few degrees higher than you normally would, and turn it off when no-one is home. Making wise use of your air conditioner will have the biggest impact on your summer energy bill.
- In winter, turn the heat down a couple of degrees when you'er not at home. Even if your home is heated with gas or oil, you'll reduce the cost of operating the furnace.
- Run cold-water washes instead of warm or hot.
- Set your dishwasher to start after 10 pm instead of during the day.