Long Insurance Services of Kernersville, NC

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All Posts in Category: Safety

Clothes Dryers Fire Safety

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission estimates that in 1997, there were 16,700 fires, 30
deaths and 430 injuries associated with clothes dryers. Some of these fires can occur when lint builds
up in the filter or in the exhaust duct. Under certain conditions, when lint blocks the flow of air,
excessive heat build-up can cause a fire in some dryers.

To prevent fires:
? Clean the lint filter regularly and make sure the dryer is operating properly. Clean the filter
after each load of clothes. While the dryer is operating, check the outside exhaust to make
sure exhaust air is escaping normally. If it is not, turn the dryer off and look inside both ends
of the duct for lint. Remove any lint found there. If there are signs that the dryer is hotter than
normal, this may be a sign that the dryer’s temperature control thermostat needs servicing.
? If clothing is still damp at the end of a normal cycle or requires longer dryer times, this may be
a sign that the exhaust or lint screen is blocked.
? Plastic Flexible duct should be replaced with rigid or flexible metal ducts. Inspect all Ducts
for kinks or crushing, which can greatly reduce the airflow.
? Closely follow manufacturers’ instructions for new installations. Most manufacturers specify
the use of a rigid or flexible metal duct to provide a minimum restriction of airflow. If metal
duct is not available at the retailer where the dryer was purchased, check other locations, such
as hardware or builder supply stores. If you are having the dryer installed, insist upon metal
duct unless the installer has verified that the manufacturer permits the use of plastic duct.

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Barbecue Grill Safety

Propane gas is highly flammable. Each year, about 600 fires/explosions occur with gas grills resulting in injuries
to about 30 people. The new safety standard for propane gas tanks requires that an “over-fill prevention device”
be installed in new gas tanks. Beginning April 1, 2002, only the new propane gas tanks, which have valve
handles with three “lobes” (prongs) instead of five (old design), will be sold or refilled nationwide.

An additional industry standard was adopted in 1995 at the urging of U.S. Consumer Product Safety
Commission (CPSC). The safety standard calls for a device to limit the flow of gas if the hose ruptures; a
mechanism to shut-off the grill if it overheats; and a device to prevent the flow of gas if the connection between
tank and grill is not leak-proof. People who have grills that do not meet the 1995 standard should either get a
new grill or be especially attentive to the safety tips below.

Gas Grill Safety Tips
Here are some safety tips to reduce the risk of fire or explosion with gas grills:
? Check grill hoses for cracking, brittleness, holes, and leaks. Make sure there are no
sharp bends in the hose or tubing.
? Move gas hoses as far away as possible from hot surfaces and dripping hot grease.
? Always keep propane gas containers upright.
? Never store a spare gas container under or near the grill or indoors.
? Never store or use flammable liquids, like gasoline, near the grill.
? Never keep a filled container in a hot car or car trunk. Heat will cause the gas pressure to increase, which
may open the relief valve and allow gas to escape.
? Make sure your spark ignitor is consistently generating a spark to create a flame and burn the propane gas.
If the flame is not visible, the heavier-than-air propane gas may be escaping and could explode.
? Never bring the propane tank into the house.

Charcoal Grill Safety Tips
Charcoal produces carbon monoxide (CO) when it is burned. CO is a colorless, odorless gas that can accumulate
to toxic levels in closed environments. Each year about 17 people die as a result of CO fumes from charcoal
being burned inside. To reduce the risk of CO poisoning:
? Never burn charcoal inside of homes, vehicles, tents, or campers.
? Charcoal should never be used indoors, even if ventilation is provided.
? Since charcoal produces CO fumes until the charcoal is completely extinguished, do not store the grill
indoors with freshly used coals.

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