In the wake of two major rear porch fires in Chelsea – one just last Sunday – Fire Chief Leonard Albanese is declaring June to be Porch Fire Safety month.
“The Chelsea Fire Department is sponsoring a Porch Fire Safety campaign for the month of June,” he said. “Rear porch fires are a major cause of fast moving fires that can threaten our densely populated neighborhoods. These fires can burn undetected by occupants or interior smoke alarms.”
The Chelsea Fire Department wants residents to take three steps to help prevent porch fires:
- Grilling Safety: Grilling is not allowed on porches in the city. One must grill in the yard, at least 10 feet from any structure.
- Smoking Safety: If you smoke, put your cigarettes out. All the way out. Every time. Please wet your butts down and dispose in heavy metal cans with sand. NEVER discard cigarettes in mulch or potted plants. NEVER toss cigarette butts from windows or porches.
- Storage safety: Your back porch is your family’s second means of egress out of your home in case of fire or other emergency. Unnecessary storage adds weight and fire load to your porch. Don’t use your porch for bulk storage. Always keep your pathway and stairway clear for easy egress.
“Porch fire safety is important,” he said. “Last year there were approximately 100 grill fires in Massachusetts, almost half extended to a dwelling. Some 70 percent of these fires occurred between May and September. Nearly 150 residential fires were started outside by cigarettes and extended to a building. Please do your part to help protect our neighborhoods.”
The Chelsea Fire Department said it thanked residents for their cooperation, and want to make sure everyone has a safe and enjoyable summer.