With cold temperatures, space heater usage rises leading to safety concerns
EUGENE, Ore. -- Cooler temperatures hitting the area are increasing the use of space heaters to keep warm.
However, those heaters can be dangerous - just last March a tragic fire killed a Douglas County family of five in in Riddle.
The fire was found to be caused by flammable material too close to a space heater.
Eugene Springfield Fire Marshal Merryl Harrison wants to make sure everyone keeps safe and warm as temperatures begin to drop.
“We may have a wet shirt or a towel that we might simply place on top of a space heater, forget about it, thermos switch comes on or the portable heater is still left on, and now we have a recipe for fire,” Harrison explained.
According to Harrison, the best thing to do is get a certified heater that meets US safety standards.
Plug the heaters into an undamaged wall outlet and avoid using extension cords and running them under a rug.
Harrison says the materials that are found in homes are much more flammable than they were 30 years ago, which is another reason to be careful when using space heaters.