Burn Center Urges Awareness of Fire Hazards
Water is usually used to put out a fire, but in cases of flooding, it can
create one. “Fire is one of the most frequent hazards following
a flood,” said Dr. Tracee Short, Medical Director of Baton Rouge
General’s Regional Burn Center.
From generators and gas lines to chemicals and electric wires, fire hazards
are common, so residents should practice safety as they begin the rebuilding
process. Following are some tips to avoid fire-related incidents:
- Remove standing water, wet carpets and furnishings. Air dry your home with
good ventilation before restoring power.
- Don’t run cords under rugs or carpets where heat might build up.
- Never use accelerants when you burn trash, and allow debris to dry before
you burn it.
- Wear protective clothing and look for combustible liquids that may have
spilled, such as gasoline, paint thinner or lighter fluid.
- Check with local authorities for help with disposal of chemicals.
- Once flood waters have receded, disconnect the power supply at the main
breaker or fuse box.
- Assume all wires on the ground are electrically charged, including cable feeds.
- Have a licensed electrician survey your home for damage.
- Be alert to natural gas leaks, which can cause explosions.
- If you smell gas (rotten egg odor) or hear a blowing or hissing noise,
quickly leave the premises.
- Call the utility company if you suspect a gas leak.