Mass. Fire Marshall Urges Safety During Sandy

With officials warning of power outages across New England due to Hurricane Sandy, some of those affected may turn to alternate sources of energy to provide electricity, heat and lighting. Before starting up the generator or lighting the candles, there are some safety precautions which should be taken. New England Public Radio’s Adam Frenier reports.

After last October’s Nor’easter, many people around the region have installed electrical generators to provide power during a power outage. Speaking from the state’s emergency bunker in Framingham, Massachusetts State Fire Marshall Stephen Coan says homeowners should make sure these devices are properly located before using them.

“Generators need to be used in an outside location. Do not put a generator in a home whether you would consider a basement or even a garage. They need full ventilation to be able to operate safely with the development of increased Carbon Monoxide, which as we know, is a silent killer”.

Coan also cautions against using a household oven as a source of heat. He says opening the door to a functioning oven can also spread Carbon Monoxide throughout a residence. The Fire Marshall says battery-operated flashlights are the safest source of light during a power outage. Coan says if candles must be used, there should be nothing placed within a foot them.