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Keep warm safely this winter

Snow Heaviest 2019Last February, I had trouble getting out of my driveway in about 3 feet of snow when my power went out. I intensely dislike winter snowstorms here in the Seattle area.

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission reminds families to be aware of safety in and around the home this winter. The agency offers these safety tips on three winter hazards:

Carbon monoxide

  • Use portable generators outside your home and place them at least 20 feet away from the residence with exhaust pointed away from spaces where it can gather and be a hazard. Never use a generator inside a home, basement, shed, or garage. The exhaust from portable generators contains poisonous carbon monoxide, which can kill in minutes. 
  • Most portable generator-related deaths from CO poisoning occur during the cold winter months. 
  • Never leave a car running in a garage, even with the garage door open.
  • Install CO alarms in your home on every level and outside all sleeping areas. Test CO alarms monthly. 
  • See the CPSC’s video "Carbon Monoxide the Invisible Killer" for more information.

Space heaters

  • Keep flammable objects, such as curtains, sofas, beds, clothes, and papers at least 3 feet away from your space heater at all times.
  • Make sure your space heater is placed on a stable, level, flat surface in an area where it can’t be knocked over.
  • Turn off space heaters when you’re sleeping, or when you leave the room. 
  • Install smoke alarms on every floor of your home, outside all sleeping areas, and inside each bedroom. Test smoke alarms once a month to make sure they’re working. 

Snow blowers

Most snow blower injuries happen when consumers try to clear snow from the discharge chute with their hands.

  • Never leave a gas-powered snow blower running in an enclosed area. The exhaust contains poisonous carbon monoxide, which can kill in minutes.
  • Don’t add gasoline to a running or hot engine to avoid a fire, and always keep the gasoline in a portable gasoline container with a child-resistant closure to prevent child poisonings.

Remember these safety tips to avoid tragedies in the home this winter.


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Well, I'm glad I don't have to worry about snow here in LA but great tips. Carbon Monoxide poisoning is a scary thing.


Great tips for winter. You can now get a co2 and smoke detector in one. Which is great so you don't have several different devices all over your house. I couldn't even sell my place without having one installed.


Hi Jennifer,

Thanks for the tip about a CO2 and smoke detector. I didn't know about that.


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