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Avoiding fire caused by space heaters

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SOUTH BURLINGTON, Vt. (WCAX) – Fires started by space heaters are common but easily avoidable. If you have a space heater, experts have some tips to stay safe this winter.

Space heaters are only for temporary use. Using it under a desk to keep your feet warm is okay, but you should never use it to heat your entire house. It should not be left on for more than four hours, should never have anything combustible within three feet of it, and should not be left on overnight.

“We don’t want you to be a statistic and if we use some common sense, we can avoid an accident, injury, or loss of property,” said South Burlington Fire Marshall Terry Francis.

The United States Fire Administration estimates about 19,000 space heater-related fires a year causing 190 deaths, about $344 million in damage, and about 600 injuries that require emergency room visits.

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