Written by Owen Magee Friday, 14 January 2011 00:00
This season appears to be on the way to being a record snowfall season. The most recent blizzard saw very few residential hydrants being cleared. Some are still inaccessible. Firefighters answer your calls 24/7. Please answer their call for help. Please keep the hydrant nearest to your home clear of snow and ice. Please pass the word to neighbors who may not see this appeal for help. It only takes a few minutes to clear out a covered or hidden fire hydrant. For every minute a fire burns unchecked it doubles in size. A simple, small fire can destroy a typical house in a matter of minutes. Please help your firefighters protect your neighborhood and save precious time. Keep the hydrant nearest you clear.
• Alternative heating devices: Keep all heaters clear of combustible material. Never use an extension cord to supply an electric heater, it could melt and cause a fire. Your heater should be the type that, if tipped over, it will turn off. Never leave any type of heater unattended.
• Be sure you have a working carbon monoxide detector. Replace any unit eight years or older. It’s the Law in New York State.
• Be sure your heating system is checked. The cold weather will keep it working overtime.
• In the event of a power failure, refrain from using candles. Use a battery-powered hand light.
• Do not use your stove to heat your house.
• Wellness checks: Be sure your elderly family members and neighbors are checked on, especially during freezing weather. Do not assume someone else will.
• Know the direct phone number of your fire department. Calling 911 for a fire could result in you being put on hold, especially during heavy call load periods, as was the case recently in Elmont. Every fire department, every year, sends residents phone stickers. Put a sticker on every phone, including cell phones.