Fire Dept. Encourages Caution when Using Alternative Heating
KREX News Room
GRAND JUNCTION, Colo. - As the Western Slope continues to still see extreme cold temperatures, more folks are looking for extra ways to heat their homes but some may find they're looking at the wrong options.
Just a few weeks into this year's winter season, and local hardware stores like the Home Depot are already selling out of portable electric heaters.
“We're anticipating possibly some more but we can't guarantee that,” said Dennis Rosette, master trade specialist at the Home Depot.
Rosette says they actually had more home heaters this year than last, but because of the frigid temperatures, these devices have been flying off the shelves.
“We did have a couple left over from last year but we already sold out of those and what was allotted for this year,” said Rosette.
The hardware store does still have certain kerosene heaters left, which is something fire officials are advising folks to take certain precautions when using.
Grand Junction Fire officials say they've had a number of carbon monoxide calls this year, which have been related to the ways folks have been heating their homes. Some are either using the wrong methods, while others aren't taken proper safety measures.
“It’s a time to try and stay warm but be careful of how you do it,” said Mike Page of the Grand Junction Fire Department.
Page warns that anytime you have an open flame in the house, one of the byproducts of that process is carbon monoxide. This is why he says it’s especially important to never run any fuel-driven heaters inside.
“Those are really the major issues,” said Page. “Anytime you have something that burns with gasoline, or kerosene or some other fuel, when you have an open flame in your house, that's a problem.”
“Those heaters use a lot of oxygen in the room and they will actually suck the oxygen out of the room,” said Rosette.
Officials say even when running heaters deemed safe for indoors, to always keep them three feet away from objects for extra safety. They add that when you go to bed, to always remember to turn off any portable heaters, because that's when several problems can occur.