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El Paso Fire Dept. provides space heater safety tips to keep you safe as temperatures drop

EL PASO, Texas -- Even though El Paso hasn't had it's first freeze just yet, it's still getting very cold overnight across the Borderland. Space heaters are a great way stay warm, but they can be dangerous, which is why the El Paso Fire Department is asking you to stay cautious to prevent a fire in your home.

Here are some tips to keep in mind:

  • One of the most important tips, try to keep these heaters 3 feet away from any item that can easily catch fire like furniture, curtains, your bed, etc.
  • Another tip, try not to set these up in the bathroom. If it's near water that could be dangerous. 
  • Try not to plug them in a hallway or by a doorway where you could trip over it easily.
  • Another big tip, make sure to plug these into a wall outlet. Do not use an extension cord. Sometimes the cords aren't equip to handle the electric currents of the heaters.
  • Make sure you find one that says UL on the back sticker, that means it has been tested and meets safety criteria.

Battalion Chief with the El Paso Fire Department Ruben Candelaria says in his 20-plus year career, he hasn't seen many house fires caused by these heaters but it can happen.

"They leave them on unattended, or they put them in their bedroom, and, hey, I'm just gonna turn the heater off for the whole house, I'm going to leave it in a leave it on in my bedroom, and they go to sleep and that that's dangerous to tip over and you can trip over it. They're not meant to be left unattended, that's biggest problem," he said.

Candelaria also noted that if anyone if having problems with their furnace as the temperatures get colder, to contact Project Bravo. Click here, for more information.

Brianna Chavez

Brianna Chavez is an ABC-7 reporter/producer.

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