Fire officials remind residents to use caution with heating appliances in colder weather

PHOTO COURTESY OF COLUMBIA RIVER FIRE AND RESCUE - A portable space heater was being used on top of a wooden chair when the chair caught on fire on Wednesday, Nov. 29, in a St. Helens home in the 300 block of Park Way. Fire officials remind residents to keep heaters away from combustible materials and maintain working smoke detectors, especially during cold months.Columbia River Fire and Rescue crews were dispatched to the 300 block of Park Way on Wednesday, Nov. 29, after a fire was started by a space heater in the house.

Crews were dispatched to the house at 5:30 a.m. Wednesday when a fire broke out on the second floor. A space heater had been placed on a wooden chair, which then caught fire.

Damage from the fire was limited to the room and smoke damage was present throughout the second floor of the home, according to a release from CRFR.

The home did not have a working smoke alarm.

As colder weather sets in, fire officials remind homeowners to be cautious when using space heaters and other heating devices.

The National Fire Protection Agency recommends maintaining a three-foot radius between any heating equipment like space heaters, fireplaces, furnaces, wood stoves and any items that are flammable or combustible. NFPA also recommends turning off portable heaters when leaving a room or before going to bed.

Fire officials also recommend installing a working smoke alarm in your home. The NFPA suggests testing the alarm at least once a month to ensure it's working properly.

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