Fire Prevention and Inspection
Fire Inspection and Prevention Division
Fire Inspector/EMT-B John Hodge (K1)
Hours of Operation:
Monday - Friday
**Please call ahead to make an appointment for inspections or meetings with the Fire Inspector. This will ensure that you have all appropriate paperwork in order and that the Fire Inspector will be able to go over what you need to have done prior to your inspection, and then we can schedule you. Thank you.**
CLICK HERE to see Department Forms
A concerned citizen contacted the Pelham Fire Department in the hopes that they could reach out to the community and help to educate those on safe practices while at a Gas pump. Please click here for more information on these practices.
Focus on Fire Safety: Prevent Home Fires!
Did you know that in 2007 approximately 78% of all structure fires occurred in residences? Do you regularly check for home fire hazards? The theme for Fire Prevention Week (October 5-11) is It’s Fire Prevention Week: Prevent Home Fires! A special emphasis is being placed on leading causes of home fires – cooking, heating, electrical, smoking materials, and candles. More »
Please check out this link below with more on fire safety for the home!
STATE OF NEW HAMPSHIRE DEPARTMENT OF SAFETY
John J. Barthelmes, Commissioner
Division of Fire Safety
OFFICE OF THE STATE FIRE MARSHAL
J. William Degnan, State Fire Marshal
Office: 110 Smokey Bear Blvd., Concord, NH
Mailing Address: 33 Hazen Drive, Concord, NH 03305
603-223-4289, FAX 603-223-4294
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE SEPTEMBER 23, 2008
GET ALARMED NEW HAMPSHIRE
THE MONTH OF OCTOBER FOCUSES ON FIRE
PREVENTION NATIONAL FIRE PREVENTION THEME –
“PREVENT HOME FIRES”
The New Hampshire Association of Fire Chiefs joins the National Fire Protection Association and the New Hampshire State Fire Marshal’s Office and national organizations to draw attention to the 2008 Fire Prevention Week theme: “Prevent Home Fires!” Many organizations are expanding these efforts by declaring the entire month as a time to focus on home fire safety. “One of the biggest threats to any residence, and to the people who live there, is fire. Ironically, fires in homes are the least “considered” threat by homeowners. This alone, is one of the major reasons the United States suffers the highest fire death rate in the industrialized world,” says J. William Degnan, New Hampshire State Fire Marshal.
This year’s theme focuses on preventing fires in the home – where we spend most of our time and where 80% of fire deaths occur. The leading causes of fires in homes are cooking, heating equipment and electrical. People can protect themselves from fire by taking some basic safety precautions:
Pay particular attention while cooking, especially when using oils and grease. Cooking appliances should be kept clean of grease build-up, which can easily ignite. Applying a lid to a small grease fire is usually the most effective and safest method of controlling it. Trying to carry a pan that’s on fire is extremely dangerous because it can ignite clothes or spill, causing severe burns. If the fire is inside your oven, turn off the heat and leave the door closed to cut off the fire’s air supply. Young children should be kept away from cooking appliances to prevent any mishaps. It’s always a good idea to use back burners when possible and keep pot handles turned to the inside so they won’t be pulled or knocked over. Check stoves and other appliances before going to bed or leaving your home to make sure that the units are left in the “off” position.
Electric heaters should have automatic safety switches to turn them off if tipped over. They also should carry the UL approval label. Be sure to check cords before plugging in the heater. If frayed, worn, or broken, do not use. Either replace the heater or have an electrician replace the cord. Just putting tape on the cord is not enough to prevent overheating and fire. Never use extension cords with portable heaters. To supply a heater with a small, ordinary household extension cord will cause the cord to overheat and burn. Keep all materials that can burn at least 36 inches away from the unit.
Many kerosene heater fires are attributed to the misuse or abuse of the devices. Get started on the right foot by purchasing a heater that carries the UL label. This means it has been tested for safety. Be sure it has an automatic safety switch to shut it off if it’s tipped over. An automatic starter eliminates the need for matches and makes for safer starts. A fuel gauge will help ensure you do not overfill the heater. A safety grill on the front can prevent accidental contact burns. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions for assembly. Use only crystal-clear 1K kerosene; never use a yellow or contaminated kerosene or any other fuel. Fill it only outside. Store kerosene outside in a metal container with a tight-fitting lid that is clearly marked for kerosene. When using kerosene heaters, be sure the room is well ventilated. Opening a door to an adjoining room or area may be enough. Better yet, open a window in the room.
Wood stoves and other wood-burning devices are popular heating systems. Before investing in one for your home, think as much about safety as you will about the ease of use, efficiency and appearance. Have your stove installed by a professional. Keep a tight fitting screen or glass doors in front of the stove or fireplace at all times. Special retaining screens can keep children and pets away from wood stoves and prevent burns. Dispose of ashes in metal containers, never in paper bags, cardboard boxes, or plastic wastebaskets. Wet ashes down to cool them thoroughly. Remember, ashes can retain enough heat to cause a fire for several days, so take no chances. Although these tips should help prevent a fire, know the signs of danger. Loud roars, sucking sounds and shaking pipes mean trouble and danger. If you hear these sounds, get everyone out of the house. Quickly shut off the fire’s air supply by closing any air-intake vents in the firebox. Close the damper. Call the fire department from a nearby phone.
According to the NFPA, electrical distribution and lighting equipment is involved in 20,800 home fires per year. To help prevent electrical fires, frayed cords should be replaced or repaired on all electrical devices; extension cords should not cross doorways or be placed under carpets or rugs; ground fault circuit interrupter electrical outlets should in installed in kitchens, bathrooms, outdoor areas, basements and garages; and overloading receptacles should be avoided.
Lebanon Fire Chief Chris Christopoulos, President of the New Hampshire Association of Fire Chiefs says working smoke alarms should be a priority at any time of year. This is a great time to test your alarms to make sure they are working. Having working smoke alarms and a prepared and practiced emergency escape plan will help insure your survival in a home fire. “Many communities in the United States are taking safety a step further by installing residential sprinkler systems. Fire sprinklers and smoke alarms increase your chances of surviving a fire to 82%. An added benefit is that fire sprinklers also protect the lives of firefighters. The majority of firefighter injuries and deaths occur fighting residential fires”.
A Message from U.S. Fire Administrator Greg Cade about Home Smoke Alarms
USFA is aware that there is a growing controversy about which type of smoke alarm is most appropriate to protect Americans in their homes. In accordance with our mission to reduce life and economic losses due to fire, we offer the following guidance regarding home smoke alarms.
The body of scientific knowledge about fire, smoke, and smoke detection has developed over many years and is extensive. The USFA has either fully or partially funded a number of research efforts, including a recent study by the National Institute of Standards and Technology’s (NIST) Center for Fire Research. Other contributors to this knowledge include the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), the National Fire Protection Association, Underwriters Laboratories, the Home Fire Safety Council, the Residential Fire Safety Institute, the Home Fire Sprinkler Coalition, and distinguished academics with expertise in smoke alarm and sensor technology. The body of research reflects the following:
Based upon the above, the USFA provides the following guidance to the public and to state and local legislative bodies that may be grappling with the issue of the proper type of smoke alarm to select for use in a residence:
NATIONAL ARSON AWARENESS WEEK
May 4 – 10, 2008
New Hampshire State Fire Marshal J. William Degnan wants everyone to pay real close attention to the following information as it could save a life and prevent an injury! As you read on you will see a life was lost and someone was injured we don’t want this to happen in our state or any where else again.
The theme for this year’s Arson Awareness Week is “Toylike Lighters—Playing with Fire.” The goal of this year’s Arson Awareness Week is to focus public attention on the dangers of toylike or novelty lighters in the hands of children. Toylike or novelty lighters have been responsible for injuries, deaths, and accidents across the Nation.
Children are attracted to novelty lighters because they look like toys. Many of these lighters look like animals, miniature cars, mobile phones, cameras, fishing lures, stacks of coins, markers, and doll accessories. One lighter is nearly identical to the popular rubber ducky bath toy—it even quacks! There are also toylike and novelty lighters that look like tools such as tape measures, drills, hammers, and paint brushes. Ironically, there are even lighters that mimic a Dalmatian donning a fire helmet, a red fire truck, or fire extinguishers.
Children Killed and Injured
Mistaking lighters for toys has proved to be deadly: On September 25, 2007, 15-month old Peyton Edwards and 2-year-old Breydon Edwards of Russellville, Arkansas, died after setting fire to their apartment with a motorcycle-shaped lighter.
Shane St. Pierre was in grocery store in Livermore, Maine, last June with his mother buying sandwiches. Thinking it might be a flashlight; the 6-year-old picked up a miniature baseball bat and flicked the switch. A flame shot out, singeing his eyebrow and burning part of his face. His father, Norm St. Pierre, a fire chief in nearby West Paris, became an advocate for a ban on toylike and novelty lighters. Maine passed a ban on toylike lighters on March 14, 2008.
New Hampshire has not been exempt from these incidences, Marshal Degnan wants all parents to take the time to look around their homes for these types of lighters and get them out of there. As you read above it is happening and this is only two incidences, there are many more.
Fire Prevention Reports for your reading Pleasure Enjoy
(opens in PDF)
Fire Prevention For Kids
The link below is for the United States Fire Administration web site. The link will take you directly to the "Kids" section of the web site. This page is interactive for kids. Enjoy!
Click on the link below to watch a video on Kitchen Grease Fires !
(Opens in Windows Media Player)
If you happen live in a house that
was built before the 1970s, there’s a good chance that asbestos was used in
its construction. Even if your house was built since then, asbestos may
still be found in some areas. In fact, only houses built within the last 10
years or so should be free of insulating asbestos, although it could very
easily have been used in other forms.
The Pelham Fire Dept. also offers free home safety inspections. If you would like an inspection, please contact the Pelham Fire Dept. at 635-2703 to schedule an appointment.
CHECK YOUR SMOKE DETECTORS
Residential smoke alarms should be replaced after 10 years, according to The International Association of Fire Chiefs (IAFC), the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) and the U.S. Fire Administration (USFA). More than one-third of the country’s smoke alarms are past their recommended life span. That translates to 77 million smoke alarms in need of replacement and the number is growing by 5 million each year.
“Residential smoke alarms have a 10 year life and must be replaced,” said Pat Coughlin, a former fire chief and direction of Operation Life Safety for the IAFC. Operation Life Safety provides educational and training programs for fire services nationwide. “After 10 years, smoke alarms can accumulate significant levels of dust, dirt and debris” Coughlin said.
“A smoke alarm works 24 hours a day, seven days a week. That’s more than 87,000 hours over 10 years. It makes sense to be safe and replace your smoke alarm regularly just as you would any other household appliance – especially one that could save your life” said Coughlin.
The NFPA recommends placing smoke alarms in each sleeping room, the hallway adjacent to sleeping rooms and one on each level of the home. Maintaining those alarms is also critical. Alarms should be cleaned and tested regularly, batteries need to be replaced annually, and the smoke alarm itself should be replaced every 10 years.