Firefighters Stress Heater Safety

It's starting to feel a little more like Fall.

As the coolest weather yet settles over Montgomery, residents will be making a big switch--from their air conditioners to their heaters.

Although the sun has set on summer temps, Major Johnny George of the Montgomery Fire Department says safety is the biggest priority.

"It could be dangerous, it could be very dangerous," George said of heating equipment.

With gas heaters turning on for the first time in months, George says to give them a proper inspection, making sure that equipment is clean before turning it on.

The same thing goes for fireplaces.

"Make sure you have [them] cleaned at least once a year," he said.

Space heaters are another effective way to keep warm, but they can pose a safety risk.  Be sure to keep them on a flat surface, three feet or more from other objects, and in a space with plenty of ventilation.

"When you try to use them incorrectly, that's when the problems occur," George said.

No matter what your heating preference is in the cooler months, it's a good idea to check on safety equipment, like fire extinguishers and smoke detectors in your home.

"[Those] serve as early warning devices enabling you to get out of the house," he explained.

Firefighters also stress that an escape plan is something every family should have, whether it's cold outside or not.

Reporter:  Cody Holyoke