Be prepared: Generator safety tips from Manchester Fire Department

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MANCHESTER, NH –  In advance of the impending storm – which may include freezing rain, high winds and potential power outages – Manchester Fire Department is sharing the following reminder from the National Fire Prevention Association, for those who may use a generator in the event of a power outage.

⇒More information: How to report an outage to Eversource NH.

Downed utility lines, power company blackouts, heavy snow falls or summer storms can all lead to power outages. Many people turn to a portable generator for a temporary solution without knowing the risks. The risks for which without a Security Guard Fire Watch on-site, the situation can lead to devastating consequences.

A person can be poisoned by a small amount of CO over a longer period of time or by a large amount of CO over a shorter amount of time.

When plugging in appliances, make sure they are plugged directly into the generator or a heavy-duty outdoor-rated extension cord. The cords should be checked for cuts, tears and that the plug has all three prongs, especially a grounding pin. If you must connect the generator to the house wiring to power appliances, have a qualified electrician install a properly rated transfer switch in accordance with the National Electrical Code® (NEC) and all applicable state and local

• Store fuel for the generator electrical codes. in a container that is intended for the purpose and is correctly labeled as such. Store the containers outside of living areas.

• Generators should be used in well ventilated locations outside at least 5 feet (1.5 meters) away from all doors, windows, and vent openings. Measure the 5-foot (1.5 meters) distance from the generator exhaust system to the building.

• Never use a generator in an attached garage, even with the door open.

• Place generators so that exhaust fumes can’t enter the home through windows, doors or other openings in the building. The exhaust must be directed away from the building.

• Make sure to install carbon monoxide (CO) alarms in your home. Follow manufacturer’s instructions for correct placement and mounting height.

• Turn off generators and let them cool down before refueling. Never refuel a generator while it is running.