Space heaters can be a convenient way to heat up a small area without having to turn up the thermostat. In a cold office, some people use a space heater under the desk to keep their feet warm. Space heaters can also be used for people who are sensitive to the cold, like an elderly parent. While they are a good supplemental heating source, consumers need to understand the safety risks involved with using portable heaters.
Space Heaters and House Fires
If you missed attorney Charles Gilman talking about what you should do if something goes wrong with a space heater on Fox 45 News Baltimore, here are some important tips to using space heaters safely.
- Keep space heaters away from drapes, furniture, or other things that can burn.
- Plug space heaters directly into wall outlets and avoid using extension cords.
- Turn off the space heater when you leave the room or when you go to bed.
- Put heaters on a level surface away from places where someone might bump into it and knock it over.
- Make sure children and pets near space heaters are supervised.
- Keep space heaters away from water and don’t use them near a sink or in the bathroom.
According to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), there are more than 25,000 residential fires every year which are associated with the use of space heaters. Space heater house fires cause more than 300 deaths and an estimated 6,000 people receive hospital emergency room care for burn injuries associated with space heaters.
Amazon Space Heaters Recall
Amazon recalled about 377,000 space heaters after a number of reports of overheating, burning, and sparking. The company received at least 30 complaints involving the use of the Amazon Basics 1500 watt ceramic space heater in the U.S. and Canada. According to the CPSC, “the heater can overheat, posing fire and burn hazards.”
In 2018, about 350,000 Vornado Personal Vortex space heaters were recalled after a report of a death caused by a fire involving the heater. In December 2017, a 90-year-old man in Minnesota died in a house fire involving the recalled heater. There were at least 19 other reports of the heaters catching fire.
Space Heater Burn Injuries
Even if a space heater does not set the house on fire, they can still be responsible for serious burn injuries. Minor burns may not require a trip to the hospital but any burn injury is best evaluated by a doctor. People with a second or third-degree burn should be seen by a doctor, and may require emergency treatment. Serious burns can lead to infections, blistering, nerve damage, and result in permanent scarring.
Space Heater Burn Injury Attorneys
Space heater manufacturers may fail to warn users about the dangers of their products. If you were injured because of a defective space heater, the law firm of Gilman & Bedigian may be able to help. Our attorneys have years of experience dealing with burn injury claims in Philadelphia, DC, and Baltimore. Contact us today for a free consultation.