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Public Education

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Chimney Fire Safety

(Furnaces, fireplaces, wood stoves and space heaters)

It's easy to forget about your chimney's condition-and its importance to the safety of your home. A chimney blockage can fill your home with deadly fumes...while a chimney fire, too, can spell disaster. Here's how to diagnose and treat common chimney problems before they lead to real trouble.

Why is chimney cleaning important?

  • Animal nests
  • Ventilation
  • Cracks/leaks
  • Creosotes – flammable substance deposit inside chimney walls (creosote layers build up they can be ignited by heat or sparks, leaving you with a fire raging in your chimney)

Precautions Before You Use Any Heating Source This Season

  • Never use gasoline or other flammable liquids to kindle or revive a fire. Flammable vapors can easily travel the length of a room.
  • To keep sparks from flying and igniting clothes or furniture, use glass doors or a screen that wrap fully around the fireplace/woodstove opening. A fireproof hearth rug is also a good idea. Wear tight fitting clothing when working with the fire; avoid balloon or draping sleeves.
  • Keep children safely away from fireplaces, woodstoves, furnaces and space heaters.
  • Be sure ashes have cooled thoroughly before you dispose of them. Place ashes in a sealed metal container way from the house.
  • Annual service and maintenance is a must for woodstoves and fireplaces. Have ash and creosote build-up professionally removed, or do it yourself. Check the fireplace annually to be sure vents, flues and chimneys are in good working order, and to identify and structural damage.

Make an Escape Plan

  • Smoke alarms throughout the home; all levels of home.
  • Test the alarms every month by pushing the test button.
  • Use "The Great Escape" family planning grid to draw a floor plan of your home, marking all windows and doors. Be sure to include every household member in the creation of the plan.
  • Locate two escape routes from each room. The first way out would be the door and the second way out could be a window.
  • Choose a meeting place outside, a safe distance from the front of your home and mark it on the floor plan. Example: a tree, telephone pole, mailbox or neighbor's home.
  • Make sure your home has large address numbers on the front, and also place an address sign at the top of long driveways.
  • Practice your escape plan at least twice a year.

Fireworks Safety

The City of Walla Walla Use of Fireworks are allowed only on July 4 from 9am until 12am; December 31st ; and 1 a.m. on January 1st.

The following kinds of fireworks are restricted in the City of Walla Walla:

  • Any firework specifically designed to produce a loud noise such as whistles, explosions or reports
  • Any firework device not defined as a non-aerial common firework

To help you celebrate safely this Fourth of July, the Consumer Product Safety Commission, National Council on Fireworks Safety, and the City of Walla Walla offer the following safety tips:

  • Always read and follow label directions
  • Have an adult present
  • Buy from reliable fireworks sellers
  • Ignite outdoors
  • Have water handy
  • Never experiment or attempt to make your own fireworks
  • Light one at a time
  • Never re-ignite malfunctioning fireworks
  • Never give fireworks to small children
  • Store in a cool, dry place
  • Dispose of properly
  • Never throw fireworks at another person
  • Never carry fireworks in your pocket
  • Never shoot fireworks in metal or glass container