Henrico Fire Captain warns of hazards of improperly disposing of ashes

HENRICO, Va., (WRIC) – In less than 24 hours, Henrico firefighters have responded to two fires that were caused by improperly discarded fireplace or woodstove ashes.  In one incident, a shed and three different yards were burned while in the other a deck was destroyed and home damaged.  The ashes that set the deck on fire had been placed outside two days before the fire started.  Henrico Fire reminds everyone:

-Use a fire-resistant metal ash shovel to scoop out ashes and place them into a fire-resistant metal can with a tight fitting lid.

-Take the container outside away from combustibles, including your home’s deck; wet the ashes, and then cover with the lid. Hot coals in a pile of ashes can last up to 4 days, so let the ashes cool for at least that long.

-NEVER keep the metal can in or near your home; keeping it at least 10 feet away.

-NEVER use a paper bag, cardboard box, or plastic trash bag to dispose of ashes.

-NEVER use a vacuum cleaner to pick up ashes.

-NEVER place the metal container next to the firewood pile, against the garage, on or under a wooden deck or under a porch.


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