Tips on preventing house fires this winter - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Tips on preventing house fires this winter

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YAKIMA, Wash.-- With temperatures dropping and people trying to heat their houses, there's also an increased risk for fire.

Firefighters say people with fireplaces and stoves should have their chimneys inspected once a year, clear your roof of branches and other debris, and make sure you have a mesh grate to block jumping embers. However, fireplaces and stoves aren't the only concern.

"A large number of fires occur every year with regards to space heaters, so we want to emphasize that the area around the space heater be cleared at least within three feet," says Yakima Fire Department Captain Brandon Dorenbush.

Dorenbush says to unplug your space heater when you aren't using it.  He also says to buy a heater with a control mechanism in it, so if it falls over it will automatically turn off.