Fire Prevention Tips

This mission of the Fire Prevention Bureau is to reduce and eliminate the loss of life and property due to fire through public education, fire code enforcement and the promotion of good engineering practices.

The Fire Prevention Bureau enforces the regulations of the "International Fire Code 2003" adopted by the City of Center.

If you have any questions concerning or would like information regarding fire prevention, please call (936) 598-3288.

Electrical Hazards

• Overloaded electrical wiring, extension cords, circuits, or fuses
• Fuse or circuit breaker that repeatedly trips or blows
• Door cover missing from circuit breaker box
• Combustible or flammable materials less than 3 feet from breaker box
• Appliances exceed capacity of circuit breaker or fuse
• NEVER do electrical work yourself.  Hire an electrician.
• Extension cords are for temporary use only
• Only use properly rated extension cords
• If a cord is hot to the touch, unplug it immediately
• NEVER run an extension cord under a rug, over nails, or through door openings
• NEVER use an extension cord or applicance whose cord is worn, frayed, or damaged
• If you must add more outlets, purchase a power strip with surge protection

Heating Hazards

• Improper use of portable space heater
• Improper use of oven or stove
• Materials less than 3 feet from space heater, furnace, or water heater
• Improper use of fuel for fuel fired heaters
• Portable space heaters are a serious fire hazard
• Move the heater a minimum of 3 feet (1 yard) from furniture, drapes, curtains, bedding, clothing, toys, etc
• Turn off and unplug heater before going to bed or leaving the house
• Never use the stove or oven to heat a room
• Have a screen on your fireplace or wood stove
• Have your chimney cleaned once a year

Life Safety Actions

• Install smoke alarms on every level of the house near sleeping areas
• Test alarms monthly and replace batteries at daylight savings time change
• Discuss an escape plan with your family and practice
• Have two ways out of every room and a place outside for everyone to meet
• Make sure burglar bars can be opened from inside your home
• When there is a fire, GET OUT and STAY OUT.
• Call 911 from a cell phone or a neighbor's home

More Fire Safety Tips

Smoke inhalation is the number one cause of fire-related deaths, mostly while poeple are in their homes sleeping.  Every home needs at least one smoke detector.  If you have a two story home, you need one on each floor.  They should be placed outside of sleeping areas.  Check the detector once a month by pressing the test button.  If the alarm does not go off, or if the detector begins to "chirp" on its own every 30 seconds, then it is time to replace the battery.

Children and senior citizens are particularly vulnerable during home fires.  Ninety percent of fire deaths involving children occur in homes without working smoke detectors.

A working smoke alarm cuts the risk of dying in a home fire nearly in half by providing early warning and critical extra seconds to escape.

If you have a party at your house and people are smoking, check all seat cushions and trash cans before you go to bed.  Cigarettes can smolder for hours after you go to bed and then turn into a raging inferno

Be careful how you discard your Christmas trees.  Green trees will burn, but dry trees will burn in seconds creating intense heat.  Children will sometimes pick up discarded trees and make forts.  This can become a death trap for them if they are playing with matches or lighters.  The City has a Christmas Tree pick up day.  Call City Hall at 936/598-2941 to make sure when that day is.

911 Tip

When you call 911, you expect a prompt response from the fire and police departments. The following suggestions can help us find you when you call 911. 
•   City ordinance requires all buildings to have address numbers that are visible and legible from the street on the front of your home or business.
•   If the numbers are on the trim of the house or business and you repaint the trim, do not paint over them.  The numbers should sharply contrast in color with the surface they are secured on.
• Make sure trees, shrubs or other types of foliage are not blocking the view of the numbers from the street.
• It is best to use actual numbers instead of scripted written numbers.  It can be very difficult reading Seven Thousand Six Hundres Eighty Seven from the street.  It is much easier to reat 7867.

Please DO NOT rely ONLY on painted numbers on the curb in front of your house or business. Painted numbers wear off as car tires rub against them. When it rains, the curbs fill with water and cover the numbers. When cars are parked in front of your house or business, the numbers are covered. If these numbers are all you have, YOU MAY HAVE NOTHING when you need the numbers the most.

© City of Center  |  City Hall 617 Tenaha Street Center, TX 75935-3552  |  Phone: (936) 598-2941