Safety

Residential Fire Safety

 

Residential  Safety Checklist

The list below was compiled by our Prevention and Safety team.  It is intended to help families ensure that their home is safe.Exterior

  • House number visible from the street.
  • Trees and brush are kept away from electrical wiring.
  • 30-feet of clearance between your home and dead/dry plants, log piles, and un-trimmed trees.

Smoke/ Carbon Monoxide Alarms

  • There is one near each sleeping area and on every floor.
  • They are cleaned/ tested regularly and batteries changed yearly.
  • Smoke alarms are less than 10 years old.
  • Carbon Monoxide alarms are used in homes with fuel burning appliances

Kitchen/ Cooking

  • Stoves are not used to heat home.
  • Cooking is not left unattended.
  • It is against house rules for children to be in the kitchen while cooking.
  • You know not to put water on grease fires, it is best to put a lid on it.
  • There are no combustible materials near the stove.

Heating/Fire Place

  • Do not use kerosene or flammable liquids to start fire.
  • Heaters are kept at least 3 feet away from combustible materials.
  • Portable heaters are turned off/unplugged before going to bed or when leaving the room.
  • Fireplaces are equipped with a spark screen and ashes are placed in a metal container.
  • Lint is cleared from behind clothes dryer.

Electrical

  • Electrical wiring is not exposed or damaged.
  • Fuse boxes are equipped with proper fuses and outlets are not overloaded.
  • Extension cords are not secured on walls, or run under doorways.
  • A Qualified Electrician installed your wiring.
  • Extension cords are not used as a permanent power source.
  • You use only extension cords with a built-in circuit breaker.

Housekeeping

  • Candles are lit/ used away from combustible materials and never left unattended.
  • Oily rags/mops are destroyed or placed in covered metal cans.
  • Hazardous materials/chemicals are labeled and kept out of reach of children
  • Hazardous chemicals are properly stored in limited amounts and are kept away from heat sources.

Smoking

  • Do not smoke while lying down or using oxygen.
  • Lighters/ matches are kept away from children.
  • Use an appropriate ash tray.

Carbon Monoxide and Smoke Detectors

 

How To Prevent Carbon Monoxide Poisoning

Carbon Monoxide, a poisonous, colorless, odorless gas, is created from incompletely burned fuel and is the leading cause of accidental poisoning deaths in America.

  • Have a yearly professional inspection of all of your home’s fuel burning appliances at the beginning of the heating seasons including furnaces, hot water heaters, gas ovens and stoves.
  • Chimneys, flues and vents should also be inspected for leakage and blockage by creosote or debris. Have all vents to furnaces, water heaters or boilers checked to make sure they are not loose or disconnected.
  • Make sure that your appliances have adequate ventilation. This includes gas water heaters, clothes dryers, space heaters and wood burning stoves.
  • Never use charcoal grills in an enclosed space such as a home, garage, vehicle or tent and never bring live coals indoors after use. Never use charcoal grills as an indoor heat source.
  • Never leave a car running in an attached garage even if the garage door is open. Install a carbon monoxide detector on the ceiling near each sleeping area. If your alarm sounds and you are feeling drowsy or dizzy, leave the house and call 911 from the neighbors house. Do not reenter the house.

 

Smoke detectors save lives.

They are the easiest, most cost-efficient way to alert your family of a developing fire. Working smoke alarms cut the risk of dying in a home fire by 50%, and that’s important, because a home fire starts every 83 seconds! The faster you know about a fire, the faster you can start moving your family outside. Before you choose your smoke alarms, consider how many you need, where you should install them, when to replace them and what unique features different smoke alarms have.

Where To Place

  • Buy an approved smoke detector. Look for the UL Label.
  • Install a smoke detector inside each bedroom and in the main corridor outside of each bedroom area.
  • Install a minimum of one smoke detector on each additional level of the house and one above any stairwell.
  • Keep smoke detectors away from drafts created by fans or air ducts and away from the kitchen stove and bathroom.
  • Test each smoke detector weekly (test button) and once a month using a smoke source.
  • Replace the batteries once a year.

Source: National Fire Protection Association – First Alert Home Fire Detection Facts

When to Replace

  • Test them weekly.
  • Replace the batteries regularly.
  • Replace the smoke alarm before it is 10 years old.

Burn Permit

 

 Burn Permits are available at any WVFD fire station during normal office hours. Permits are good for the duration of the calendar year. Call your closest fire station on the day that you plan to burn to check on the "Burn Status" for the day prior to burning.


Pursuant to the International Fire Code and A.R.S. 49-501, 13-1706, and [A.A.C. R18-2-602.D.3p] Burning shall be done only where other methods of residue disposal are impractical or unsatisfactory. Williamson Valley Fire District does not assume any responsibility or liability in the burning by issuance of this permit.  

  • Permittee shall contact the  Williamson Valley Fire District Station 91 (928-717-2304) to verify that  no conditions exist under which burning is prohibited and to activate      their burn. If it is a no burn day,      all burning will be suspended. 


  • If you are advised that burning is      permitted, please call (928-717-2304) to activate your burn permit. On completion of the burn, the permittee shall call the same phone number listed above to deactivate their burn.
  • If there is no answer at the Fire      Station 91 phone number listed above, you can contact 480-627-6804. This will be our dispatch center, and they will take the information you provide them about the burning you plan to do that day-they will need the Permit # and when you will start the  burn. You will required to re-contact 480-627-6804 to advise you have completed the burn and the fire is entirely out.
  • Burn Permits are valid until      completion of the calendar year for which the permit was issued. (e.g. A burn permit was issued on June 22nd, 2016-this permit would be valid thru December 31st, 2016.) 
  • Residential burning only allows      open burning of vegetative materials conducted by or for the occupants of  residential dwellings, but does not include burning household waste or      prohibited material.  Burning shall      not present a health hazard, generate noxious or toxic fumes, or present a public nuisance.
  • Water and other firefighting      equipment/manpower shall be available at the burn site. (e.g.      water hose, shovel, etc.)
  • Keep burn piles small – 5 feet diameter or less; add to the pile as it burns.
  • The fire shall be attended at all      times.
  • The fire shall be attended at all      times and shall be totally extinguished upon completion of burning.
  • Burning shall not be conducted      during windy conditions or when winds exceed 15 mph or during any high air pollution advisory.
  • Burning shall begin no earlier      than 1 hour before sunrise and the fire must be completely extinguished 2 hours before      sunset.
  • Prohibited materials shall not be      burned. Prohibited materials includes:
  • non-paper garbage from the processing, storage, service, or consumption of food; chemically treated wood; lead-painted wood; linoleum flooring and composite countertops; tires; explosives and/or ammunition; oleander;      asphalt shingles; plastic and rubber products, including bottles for household chemicals; plastic grocery and retail bags; waste petroleum products, such as waste crankcase oil, transmission oil, and oil filters;  transformer oils; asbestos; batteries; anti-freeze; aerosol spray cans; electrical wire insulation;      thermal insulation; polyester products; hazardous waste products such as paints,      pesticides, cleaners and solvents, stains, and varnishes, and other      flammable liquids; plastic pesticide bags and containers; and hazardous material containers including those that contained lead, cadmium, mercury,      or arsenic compounds.
  • Materials shall be readily      combustible and piled. No burning      shall be started using any flammable liquids.
  • The location for open burning      shall not be less than 50 feet from any structure, and provisions shall be made to prevent the fire from spreading to within 50 feet of a structure. 
  • Burn Permit shall be kept at the      burn location.
  • No burning if, written or verbal,      order not to burn is issued.

Snakes

 

Rattlesnake Information

Snakes are part of the desert; there is no way to guarantee that you won’t encounter one if you live here. However, like most wildlife, snakes are not looking to harm humans and would prefer to be left alone. Northwest Fire District has some suggestions to help you avoid them:

  • Watch where you step. Rattlesnakes blend inwith their surrounding, so look where you put your foot down. Wear closed-toe shoes or boots outside and use a flashlight at night, especially as nights get warmer and rattlesnakes are more active. Keep walkways well lighted and clear of brush.
  • Eliminate rodents, a favorite rattlesnake food,from around your house and yard.
  • Remove what look like attractive residences for snakes. Instead of digging their own dens, rattlesnakes prefer move into existing structures. Woodpiles and junk piles should be eliminated, or moved away from the house. Fill in rodent holes and abandoned burrows.
  • No wall is totally snake proof, but a solid four foot wall with a lip at the top angling outward can help discourage snakes. The bottom of the wall should be sunk into the ground and have no tunnels under it. Gates should fit snugly against the ground.

If you do encounter a snake, back slowly and deliberately away from it. Alert others in the area, restrain pets and keep an eye on the location of the snake until it moves out of the area.  No one without proper training should pick up a rattlesnake, even a dead one. Reflex bites are possible from a snake that has been dead several hours. 

If you are bitten by a rattlesnake follow these guidelines:

 

DON’T

  • Don’t apply ice to the bitten area.
  • Don’t make an incision of any kind on the wound.
  • Don’t try to suction or suck out the poison.
  • Don’t use a constriction band or tourniquet.
  • Don’t administer drugs or alcohol.
  • Don’t use electric shock treatment.

 

DO

  • Do remain calm and move away from the snake.
  • Do remove all jewelry, watches, etc., from the affected area.
  • Do drink fluids to help prevent shock.
  • Do immobilize affected area and keep at level below the heart.
  • Do decrease total body activity as much as possible.
  • Do seek medical attention as soon as possible.




Bees

Many people expect AHB (Africanized Honey Bees) to be larger and very distinctive, but in fact they look nearly identical to the (EHB) honey bees we have long had in Arizona.Honey bees are about 3/4 inch long, brownish, and a little fuzzy. Their nests are normally hidden in cavities. Less fuzzy insects with bright yellow and black markings, or with grey paper nests are probably wasps, not bees. Larger bees are not honey bees. AHB can be distinguished from EHB by measurements under a microscope, and by analysis of their DNA. Beekeepers will continue to keep European honey bees in their hives (the familiar white boxes) so these are not a threat if well maintained. In fact, EHB provide the best defense against AHB, by providing competition, and genetic dilution since new AHB queens may mate with EHB males. 

 

Problems They Cause

Swarming and nesting:

Africanized bee colonies are likely to be more common than European bees have been, and they swarm more frequently. They nest in places European bees did not, including small cavities near the ground like water meter boxes or overturned flower pots.

Stinging:

Africanized bees defend their colonies much more vigorously than do European bees. The colonies are easily disturbed (sometimes just by being nearby). When they do sting, many more bees may participate, so there is a danger of receiving more stings. This can make them life threatening, especially to people allergic to stings, or with limited capacity to escape(the young, old, and handicapped), and to confined livestock or pets. Once disturbed AHB will continue the attack for a long distance. 

 

What You Can Do

Most people will probably never see a colony of Africanized bees. However, the following things may reduce the impact these bees may have on you.


Bee Proofing: Look for cracks and holes in your house that might lead to wall voids or other cavities a colony could occupy. Screen or caulk these holes, or fill the cavity with insulation, and bees will not move in. Clean up debris (tires, pots) that might provide nesting sites on your property.


Be alert:  Look before disturbing vegetation. Many bees coming and going from a single spot (not just many bees at flowers) may indicate a nest.


Get help: Contact trained and equipped personnel (see “bee removal” in the Yellow Pages) if you discover a honey bee colony. Don’t try to remove them alone. If bees are aggressive, call 911.


If stung: First, get away, run to shelter of a car or building, and stay there even if some bees come in with you (there are more outside). Do not jump in water (bees will still be in the area when you come up). Once safe, remove stings from your skin, it does not matter how you do it, as quickly as possible to reduce the amount of venom they inject.  If you have any type of allergic reaction or difficulty breathing, contact 911 immediately.


Firewise

 Firewise community benefits

  • Creates defensible space that prevents fires from advancing and endangering homes and lives;
  • Improves property values while reducing risk of loss;
  • Maintains strong community relationships with local fire response staff;
  • Encourages good neighbors - the more homes within a community that adopt “Firewise” practices, the greater the impact on reducing the heat and speed of the fire; and
  • Offers peace of mind  that a home is prepared to survive a wildfire in the event one should occur.

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