Keep these tips in mind to stay warm and safe this winter

(Atlanta, GA – Insurance News and Markets) – Georgia’s Insurance and Safety Fire Commissioner, Ralph Hudgens, has a few tips for Georgia residents to get through the winter safely.

Heating equipment is one of the leading causes of home fires in Georgia. Portable space heaters, open fireplaces, and wood stoves are some of the leading causes of home fires in the state. Keep heating equipment away from curtains, draperies, and other flammable material.

If you use kerosene space heaters with an automatic shut-off and use only K 1 kerosene in a space heater to avoid an explosion.

Have an HYVAC technician check out your home heating unit to ensure efficient and safer functioning. Ensure too, that fuel-burning appliances and fireplaces are properly vented.

Make sure smoke alarms work and that you have enough in your home. Most fatal fires start between 11 p.m. and 6 a.m., while the family is asleep.

Have a home escape plan with multiple escape routes in each room and a meeting place outside.

Repairs to frozen pipes on your property but not in the home, such as in your yard, are not covered by standard homeowners insurance.

Source: Office of Commissioner of Insurance, Georgia.