While no one can completely prevent fire and flood from impacting an apartment, there are several ways you can reduce the likelihood of a fire starting inside your apartment or a plumbing emergency deluging your possessions in a flood.
Vigilance Against Fire During the Winter Months
Apparently, wintertime is the season when fires occur most in American homes whether you live in a place where it snows for months out of the year, or you reside in a less frigid environment. Using the heat is a common occurrence in the coldest months of the year, but it’s not usually the heater that represents a fire danger. Cooking fires are quite common in modern homes and their frequency increases during the winter.
According to Apartment Guide, falling asleep while cooking is actually a reason some fires start:
“Lots of cooking and baking takes place during the cold winter months when the desire for warm, home-cooked meals is at its peak. Don’t deny yourself a hearty feast, just be mindful of how you go about it. Do not fall asleep while cooking. If you’re too tired, turn the meal off and finish it once you’re fully awake and alert.”
Simple techniques like having a properly functioning smoke detector and using a timer to remind you that your food is cooking and making sure that your oven mitts aren’t stored near the stove can help reduce the danger of fire. Limiting your use of candles, too, can reduce the danger an apartment fire.
Limiting Damage from Flooding in Your Apartment
Preventing floods from occurring is pretty difficult since they usually occur because of a major weather event or a broken pipe. However, there are some decisions you can make in advance of a potential water event that can reduce the damage that occurs during it. For example, it’s often possible to prepare in advance for flooding, according to House Logic.
“If you believe water will begin to accumulate in your home, shut off power at the main electrical panel in your home…But never stand in water to do so — if the area around the box is already flooded, leave it alone.”
It’s also helpful to put together an emergency bag that you can take with you in the event a flood impacts your apartment and you must evacuate the area. Similar to an earthquake disaster kit, a flood evacuation kit might have a few changes of clothes for your family, a list of emergency numbers, any necessary medications you take, and some cash to pay for supplies while you evacuate.
It’s important to remember that even if a flood occurs but doesn’t damage your property significantly, the water may still damage the structure to the point where repairs must be completed before you may return to your apartment. An emergency savings fund can help you pay for alternative accommodations in the event a disaster requires you to leave your home for some time.
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