Wintertime Safety For the Elderly
Winter and the cold weather it brings poses risks for us all, but it can be especially dangerous for older people. Broken bones from falls on ice, breathing problems caused by cold air, and lowered body temperature can all be deadly if not treated quickly.
Winter Safety Tips
Install an extra smoke detector near heating sources like space heaters and fireplaces when you start to use them in the winter months. Change smoke alarm batteries twice a year.
Keep space heaters at least three feet away from flammable objects such as curtains and upholstered chairs. Also, dont use extension cords with space heaters or run electrical cords under carpets.
Keep a fire extinguisher in the house and know how to use it.
Use liquid-fueled heaters only in well-ventilated areas to prevent carbon monoxide poisoning.
Keeping the House Warm
Keep curtains open during the day to let in warm sunlight. Close them at night to provide an added layer of insulation against the cold.
Make sure that the fireplace flue is closed when not in use to prevent cold air from blowing in. Always re-open it before lighting a fire.
Weatherproof the house with storm windows, weather stripping in door cracks, and insulation.
Heat Your Home Safely
If you plan to use a wood stove, fireplace, or space heater, be extremely careful. Follow the manufacturers instructions as well as these safety tips
Use fireplace, wood stoves, or other combustion heaters only if they are properly vented to the outside and do not leak flue gas into the indoor air space.
Do not burn paper in a fireplace.
Ensure adequate ventilation if you must use a kerosene heater.
Use only the type of fuel your heater is designed to use dont substitute.
Do not place a space heater within three feet of anything that may catch on fire, such as drapes, furniture or bedding.
Never place a space heater on top of furniture or near water.