According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, deaths from fires and burns are the third leading cause of death in the U.S. However, many home fires are preventable if homeowners increase their awareness of what constitutes a fire hazard and work to prevent those hazards from occurring in their homes.

Here are five common hazards that can turn your home into a firetrap:

Stuffing your attic with too many boxes and other flammable materials – this can be especially hazardous in warm weather states like Texas and when a water heater or furnace are also located in the attic.

Sticky windows in bedrooms and basements – Texas is a state with high humidity, which can cause windows to expand and stick, which would make escape from a fire more difficult.

Improper installation of heating equipment – especially in older homes, basement furnaces may have been improperly installed, putting the vent pipe in close proximity to combustible materials. Homeowners also need to check their furnace filters regularly and replace dirty ones.

Nonworking smoke alarms – smoke alarm batteries should be changed every year, and smoke alarm units should be replaced every 7-9 years.

Fireplace hazards – many homes with fireplaces have inadequate floor protection in front of the fireplace. Experts recommend a stone or brick hearth extension of at least 14-16 inches.

The attorneys of Roberts & Roberts have the skill, experience and resources to fully investigate any serious accident or death. If you have a question about an accident involving a serious injury or fatality, please call 800-248-6000 or contact us for a free consultation.

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