“House Fires Caused By Storage of 9 Volt, AA Batteries In Junk Drawers & Other Places Rising”

* If You Know of a Fire Incident in Your Town Caused by 9 Volt, AA or AAA Battery Storage in a Home, Please Note it in the comments Section of this Post! Thank You!

Click here for the recent Hastings, Nebraska House Fire on January 16, 2017

If you are storing loose 9 volt or AA or other batteries in a kitchen drawer or a “junk” drawer in your home, watch how you store them. Above all don’t store them loose and rolling around with other metal items, like small tools, paper clips, nails and more of the lovely mix of things we keep in our junk drawers. You also don’t want them loose and rolling around in other items like a camera case, luggage, etc.

All you need to have happened is for a metal object like steel wool or a paper clip short out across the top of a 9-volt battery and ignite paper or other easily ignited materials and you’ll have a potential disaster in your home. As indicated in the YouTube Video below, it doesn’t take much to heat a metallic object or cause a spark in order to start a fire. *Please Do Not Do This At Home*

What to do with a 9 Volt Battery

I teach safety to the public, common sense tells most of us what to do in situations that could become life threatening. I speak to 50-60 people at a time about fire safety in the home on a monthly basis. I get the same reaction from every group when I hold up a 9-volt battery and announce that it is a fire hazard and it could burn down your house.

They all kinda look at me funny, as if to ask, “Did you just say a 9-volt battery could burn down my house?” That look is almost comical.

Q: Where do you store your batteries?

A: Throw them in  in a “junk” drawer

I then hold up a brillo pad. (just one example)

Q: What do you do with the batteries when you are done with them?

A: Throw them in the trash.

A 9-volt battery (see video) is a fire hazard because the positive and negative posts are on top, right next to one another. If this comes in contact with anything metal (aluminum foil, brillo, etc…) it will spark, and if there is a fuel for this spark you will have a fire. (fire needs heat, fuel and oxygen to burn) To test this theory, put a 9-volt battery or a couple of AA batteries in your pocket with some loose change or your key chain full of keys, (use common sense) this will bring on a whole new meaning to the words, Hot Pants.

When you dispose of this type of battery (positive and negative on top) Make sure it is safely wrapped in electrical tape or something to keep it separated from anything else that may come in contact with it. A small box or zip lock bag if kept in a junk drawer should suffice.  I have seen in some stores now that the manufacturers are now packaging them with plastic caps. If you need to purchase a 9-volt battery try to find those that are packaged in this manner.

Try to be just as diligent with AA or AAA batteries. Keep them in their original packaging if stored in a “junk drawer”. Don’t let them roll around freely with all the other wonderful miscellaneous items we unknowingly toss in the drawer and don’t think twice about it.

 

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“AA Batteries Cause House Fire In Hastings, Nebraska” & How To Store Batteries Safely In The Home” #FireSafety

AA Batteries Rolling Around In Camera Case Cause House Fire In Hastings, Nebraska

“How To Store Batteries Safely In The Home”

HASTINGS, Neb. (KSNB) — Some of us may have that kitchen junk drawer that has loose batteries, tools, and other items in it, but these drawers might be a fire waiting to happen. If batteries touch in the wrong way, they might catch fire and cause a lot of damage.

“Don’t let them just roll in there,” Big G Ace Hardware Store Manager Linda Dill said. “Don’t let them roll against the screwdriver, because it can just transfer onto another battery or something down the line. The best thing to do is to store them upright and somehow covered.”

Fire officials said not only 9-volt batteries but other typs as well, contribute to rising cause of home fires in the last 4-5 years due to inappropriate storage of all household batteries in the home.

“You’d see them in many homes, but the positive and negative end of that battery are both very close,” Chief Kent Gilbert with the Hastings Fire Department said. “It’s easy for those to be shorted accidentally. It’s important to remember that it will create enough heat to cause a fire.”

Putting masking tape on batteries is one way to prevent them from touching. Plastic bags are another way.

“Putting them in plastic bags with all the negatives up, all the positives up, or however you want to do that,” Dill said. “Make sure they’re tight, so they don’t roll around in that.”

Officials said when people are done using the batteries they should get rid of them immediately to help ensure safety.

It’s recommended that people keep the original packing of the batteries and leave them in there until they are ready to use them.

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See exact data here on fire loss in deaths, dollar loss, and injuries: http://bit.ly/2hunDks

“Winter Holiday Safety Tips” #HomeSafety #HolidaySafety #NFPA

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NFPA provides a wealth of safety information to help ensure the holiday season is a safe one.

Festive celebrations, flickering lights and winter greens are hallmarks of the holiday season, but they also present fire risks that can quickly turn this festive time of year into a devastating one. NFPA’s Project Holiday campaign works to educate the public about potential fire risks during the holidays, offering tip sheets, videos, and other resources to help everyone safely enjoy the season.

Winter holiday fires by the numbers
  • Electrical distribution or lighting equipment was involved in 35% of home Christmas tree fires.
  • One-fifth (20%) of the decoration fires started in the kitchen. One out of six (17%) started in the living room, family room or den.
  • The top three days for home candle fires were Christmas, New Year’s Day, and Christmas Eve.
  • See more statistics on winter holiday fires.
Christmas tree & decoration fires

Carefully decorating your home can help make your holidays safer. Between 2009-2014, U.S. fire departments responded to an average of 210 home fires that started with Christmas trees per year. U.S. fire departments responded to an estimated average of 860 home structure fires per year that began with decorations, excluding Christmas trees.

In the throes of holiday shopping and decorating? Check out the 9 Ways You’re a Holiday Decorating Disaster.

It’s time to deck the halls, but follow NFPA’s simple safety tips to help keep yourself and your family and friends safer from fire.

NFPA’s lovable Dan Doofus shows you how to have a fire-safe holiday with a few simple safety tips.

Holiday cooking

In 2014, the three leading dates for home structure fires caused by cooking were: Thanksgiving, Christmas day and Christmas Eve.That’s why it’s important to know what you can do to help keep your friends and family safe while entertaining for the holidays. Also, read NFPA’s blog post on Martha Stewart’s website – 8 Simple Fire Safety Tips We all Need to Follow This Holiday Season.

SparkyHolidayColoringPageFor kids and families

The holidays are a time for families and friends to gather. Whether you are looking for coloring pages, activity sheets or e-cards, we have what you need to keep you fire-safe this holiday season.

For the fire service

If you’re a member of the fire service, NFPA provides templates, talking points and other great resources to help you build a comprehensive holiday safety campaign for your community.

Put a Freeze on Winter Fires campaign
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NFPA and USFA team up each year for the “Put A Freeze on Winter Fires” campaign to remind you that the winter months are the leading time of year for home fires. To help you stay safe, we’re providing a wealth of safety tips and information on cooking, heating, candles and holiday decorating – factors that contribute to the increased risk of home fires in the months ahead.

 

 

“Harvard University – “Toolbox Talk & Safety Meeting Topic Resources”

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Toolbox Talks & Safety Resources

A Toolbox Talk is an informal group discussion that focuses on a particular safety issue. These tools can be used daily to promote your departments safety culture. Toolbox talks are also intended to facilitate health and safety discussions on the job site.

Documents:
External References
Source: Harvard Environmental Health & Safety®

“CSB Names Poor Design and Failure to Test Dust Collection System Among Causes of U.S. Ink New Jersey Flash Fire that Burned Seven Workers in 2012; OSHA Again Urged to Issue New Combustible Dust Regulations”

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OSHA Again Urged to Issue New Combustible Dust Regulations  

East Rutherford, New Jersey, January 15, 2015—The flash fire that burned seven workers, one seriously, at a U.S. Ink plant in New Jersey in 2012 resulted from the accumulation of combustible dust inside a poorly designed dust collection system that had been put into operation only four days before the accident, an View of Dust Collector at US Ink investigation by the U.S. Chemical Safety Board (CSB) has found.

In a report released today and scheduled to be presented for board consideration at a CSB public meeting in East Rutherford this evening, the investigation team concludes that the system was so flawed it only took a day to accumulate enough combustible dust and hydrocarbons in the duct work to overheat, ignite spontaneously, cause an explosion in the rooftop dust collector, and send back a fiery flash that enveloped seven workers.

U.S. Ink is a subsidiary of Sun Chemical, a global graphic arts corporation which has some 9,000 employees worldwide. U.S. Ink manufactures black and color-based inks at seven U.S. locations including East Rutherford. A key step in the ink production process is mixing fine particulate solids, such as pigments and binders, with liquid oils in agitated tanks.

CSB Chairperson Rafael Moure-Eraso said, “The findings presented in the CSB report under consideration show that neither U.S. Ink nor its international parent company, Sun Chemical, performed a thorough hazard analysis, study, or testing of the system before it was commissioned in early October 2012. The original design was changed, the original company engineer retired prior to completion of the project, and no testing was done in the days before the operation of the black-ink pre-mixing room production was started up.”

The CSB found that the ductwork conveyed combustible, condensable vapors above each of three tanks in the mixing room, combining with combustible particles of dust of carbon black and Gilsonite used in the production of black ink.

Investigation Supervisor Johnnie Banks said, “The closed system air flow was insufficient to keep dust and sludge from accumulating inside the air ducts.  But to make matters worse, the new dust collector design included three vacuuming hoses which were attached to the closed-system ductwork, used to pick up accumulated dust, dirt and other material from the facility’s floor and other level surfaces as a ‘housekeeping’ measure.  The addition of these contaminants to the system ductwork doomed it to be plugged within days of startup.”

The report describes a dramatic series of events that took place within minutes on October 9, 2012.  About 1 p.m., an operator was loading powdered Gilsonite, a combustible carbon-containing mineral, into the bag dump station near the pre-mixing room when he heard what he called a strange, squealing sound.  He checked some gauges in the control room, and as he was leaving he saw a flash fire originating from the bag dump where he had just been working.  He left to notify his supervisor.  At about that same time, other workers heard a loud thump that shook the building.

In response to the flash from the bag dump station and the thump, workers congregated at the entrance to the pre-mix room.  One worker spotted flames coming from one of the tanks.  He obtained a fire extinguisher but before he could use it, he saw an orange fireball erupt and advance toward him.  He squeezed the handle on the extinguisher as he jumped from some stairs, just as the flames engulfed him and six other employees who were standing in the doorway.

The CSB determined that overheating and spontaneous ignition which likely caused the initial flash fire at the bag dump was followed by ignition of accumulated sludge-like material and powdery dust mixture of Gilsonite and carbon black in the duct work above tank 306.  Meantime, the dust collection system, which had not been turned off, continued to move burning material up toward the dust collector on the building’s roof, where a sharp pressure rise indicated an imminent explosion. This was contained by explosion suppression equipment, but the resulting pressure reversed the air flow, back to the pre-mix room, where a second flash fire occurred, engulfing the workers.

Investigation Supervisor Banks said, “The new system was not thoroughly commissioned.  There was no confirmation of whether the system would work as configured, missing opportunities to find potential hazards.  The design flaws were not revealed until the dust explosion.”

The report’s safety management analysis points to a lack of oversight by company engineers of the work done by installation contractors. The company chose not to perform a process hazard analysis or management of change analysis – required by company policy for the installation of new processing equipment – because it determined it was merely replacing a previous dust collection system in kind.  However, the new system in fact was of an entirely different design.

Considering the emergency response following the flash fire and dust collector explosion, CSB Investigators found that while workers had received training in emergency response situations, they did not follow those procedures, because U.S. Ink had not developed and implemented an effective hazard communication and response plan.  A fire coordinator was designated to use the public address system to announce a fire and also pull the alarm box. But because the system was not shut down immediately after the first flash fire, he was among the injured and could not perform his duties.

The CSB report’s regulatory analysis highlights the need for a national general industry combustible dust standard which the agency has long recommended that OSHA promulgate, putting in on the CSB’s “Most Wanted” list in 2013, following years of urging action as dust explosions continued to occur in industry.  The report, if adopted by the board, would reiterate the CSB’s original recommendation to OSHA, and also recommend OSHA broaden the industries it includes in its current National Emphasis Program on mitigating dust hazards, to include printing ink manufacturers.

Chairperson Moure-Eraso said, “Although OSHA’s investigation of this accident deemed it a combustible dust explosion, it did not issue any dust-related citations, doubtless hampered by the fact that there is no comprehensive combustible dust regulatory standard.  In U.S. Ink’s case – and thousands of other facilities with combustible dust – an OSHA standard would likely have required compliance with National Fire Protection Association codes that speak directly to such critical factors as dust containment and collection, hazard analysis, testing, ventilation, air flow, and fire suppression.”

The CSB report notes that the volume of air flow and the air velocity in the company’s dust collection system was significantly below industry recommendations – which, in the absence of a federal combustible dust regulation, are essentially voluntary.  The report states the ductwork design did not comply in several respects with guidelines set by the American Conference of Governmental Industrial Hygienists (ACGIH) Industrial Ventilation Manual.  Nor did the system’s design, the CSB said, comply with the voluntary requirements of NFPA 91, which states: “All ductwork shall be sized to provide the air volume and air velocity necessary to keep the duct interior clean and free of residual material.”

Chairperson Moure-Eraso said, “A national combustible dust standard would include requirements to conform to what are now largely voluntary industry guidelines and would go far in preventing these dust explosions.”

The report cites gaps in New Jersey’s regulatory system, noting the state’s Uniform Construction Code Act has adopted the International Building Code (which references NFPA dust standards) but has also exempted “manufacturing, production and process equipment.”  A proposed CSB recommendation to New Jersey’s Department of Community Affairs calls on the regulatory agency to revise the state’s administrative code to remove this exemption so that dust handling equipment would be designed to meet national fire code requirements.  The state is also urged to implement training for local code officials as local jurisdictions enforce the code, and to promulgate a regulation that requires all occupancies handling hazardous materials to inform the local enforcement agency of any type of construction or installation of equipment at an industrial or manufacturing facility.

Chairperson Moure-Eraso said, “Events leading to this accident began even before the earliest planning stages, when the company failed to properly oversee the design, construction and testing of a potentially hazardous system.  The victims have suffered the consequences.  We hope our recommendations are adopted so that these terrifying industrial dust explosion accidents will stop.”

The CSB is an independent federal agency charged with investigating industrial chemical accidents. The agency’s board members are appointed by the president and confirmed by the Senate. CSB investigations look into all aspects of chemical accidents, including physical causes such as equipment failure as well as inadequacies in regulations, industry standards, and safety management systems.

The Board does not issue citations or fines but does make safety recommendations to plants, industry organizations, labor groups, and regulatory agencies such as OSHA and EPA. Visit our website, www.csb.gov.

For more information, contact Communications Manager Hillary Cohen, cell 202-446-8094 or Sandy Gilmour, Public Affairs, cell 202-251-5496.

“School Safety Training & Tips”

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Safety Training Handouts – Here’s Some Help!!

Did you know that your School District’s Injury and Illness Prevention Plan requires that Supervisors talk to employees about Safety on a regular basis?

You should make Safety a topic at every staff meeting or opportunity. 

Do you need help with coming up with a training idea for staff?

Here are 52 – one for each week of the year – different handouts you can use. 

Some are technical, some are very simple – each one is about a specific topic.  Note that there are some similar topics – but each handout is different. 
Some include a test and a training verification form. 
If you use any of the handouts – be sure to include a sign up sheet and keep a copy of the sign up sheet with the handout for your OSHA records.  There is a training roster you can use to document attendance.
These documents are in a pdf format.  You will need Adobe Acrobat Reader to print the documents.

Any questions?  

Any ideas for which you would like to have a handout created?  Let us know by clicking here to send the request to Terri.

4 Reasons to be careful at work
4 Steps to setting up your computer workstation
5 things to do to defuse violence
Accident Prevention
Air Quality
Are you Stressed?
Cafeteria and Food Service Safety
Can Walking Make you Fit?
Computer Ergonomics-Are you at Risk for Pain?
Death On Our Highways-Workers in Peril
Defensive Driving
eliminate Top Safety Threats to Prevent Electrical Injuries
Extension Cord Safety
Eye Protection
Eye Safety
Facts on Fire Safety
Fertilizers and Pesticides
Fire Safety
Fundamentals of Housekeeping
Gas Welding
Give yourself an out-emergency exits
guard against machine injuries
hand tools
handwashing
hazardous chemicals in the workplace
heat stress – tri fold brochure
how safe is work – stress
integrated pest management
keeping a clean and safe office or classroom space
ladder safety
lifting to protect your back
MSDS
Near miss reporting
Parking lot security
personal protective equipment-Feet first
Personal safety awareness
power lawn mowers
prevent slips, trips, and falls
prevent sprains and strains
preventing back injuries
preventing slips and falls
safe driving tips
safe lifting
safety tips for the office
safety-attitude and behavior
slips, trips and falls
the hazards of arts and crafts
top workplace hazards
what you need to know about hearing loss
winter driving safety
working safely with chemicals
workplace hazards-protecting your eyes and ears

Harvard University – “Toolbox Talk & Safety Topic Resources”

EHS-logo harvard
Toolbox Talks

A Toolbox Talk is an informal group discussion that focuses on a particular safety issue. These tools can be used daily to promote your departments safety culture. Toolbox talks are also intended to facilitate health and safety discussions on the job site.

Documents
External References
Source: Harvard Environmental Health & Safety®

Fire Prevention Weekly Update – September 17, 2013

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Fire prevention news articles

Campaigns/other fire safety activities

Campus fire safety

Inspections/code enforcement

Smoke alarms

Sprinklers

Wildland fire safety

Fire safety tips and reminders

Other safety news

International news

NFPA Looking For Fire Departments To Help Them Deliver Fire Safety With Domino’s & The Home Depot For Fire Prevention Week 2013

Detroit Fire Department kicked-off the 2012 FPW Domino’s program

NFPA teams up with organizations and fire departments across the country regularly to expand the reach of fire safety information, but the biggest push by far happens each October around Fire Prevention Week. FPW, as it is referred to by many, is a time when the fire service and communities rally around fire prevention and safety. NFPA has been involved in this effort for more than 90 years as the week’s official sponsor. FPW will take place October 6-12 this year and NFPA is once again working with a variety of groups to help spread important fire safety information.

Marking its sixth year of collaboration on what has been a very successful Fire Prevention Week public awareness program, NFPA and Domino’s are teaming up with fire departments to deliver fire safety to Domino’s customers… with pizza! During Fire Prevention Week and throughout the month of October, in addition to fire safety tips being delivered on the top of pizza boxes, participating Domino’s stores will partner with their local fire departments to reward customers who have working smoke alarms. The fire department will deliver select orders from the store aboard a fire truck and check smoke alarms at the home. If the smoke alarms are working, the pizza is free!

The Home Depot encourages learning in their communities by hosting Saturday workshops year round, and in October they include a focus on fire safety. In collaboration with Kidde, local fire departments, and others, stores host community events that feature information and activities geared toward fire safety. Last year, NFPA teamed up with The Home Depot and Kidde on Fire Prevention Week events and as part of a larger program, The Home Depot ran a sales contest for store associates where the reward to top selling stores was the ability to donate smoke alarms to their local fire department.

If you are a member of a fire department and are interested in learning more about how to participate in one of these fire safety initiatives or others in your community, please email escafidi today.

– by NFPA’s Eileen Scafidi

USFA Fire Prevention Weekly Update – August 29, 2013

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  1. Campaigns / Other Fire Prevention Efforts
  2. Campus fire safety
  3. Inspections/Code enforcement
  4. Smoke Alarms
  5. Sprinklers
  6. Wildland Fire Safety
  7. Fire safety tips and reminders
  8. Other Safety News
  9. International News

Links to Fire Prevention-related news articles – Updated 08/26/2013

Campaigns/ Other Fire Safety Activities

  1. Study: fire risk reduced by home visits ( U.K.)
  2. Community Wide Home Fire Prevention Seminar (Florida)
  3. Golder Ranch teaches kids fire safety
  4. Marshall Fire Department to giveaway smoke, carbon monoxide detectors
  5. Houston Fire Department: Working Smoke Detectors Save Lives
  6. Springfield Offers Free Smoke Detectors for Older Residents (Massachusetts)

Campus fire safety

  1. Shaw University holds campus fire safety demonstration (North Carolina)
  2. Fire safety emphasized for college students (West Virginia)

Inspections / Code enforcement

  1. n/a

Smoke Alarms

  1. Houston Fire Department: Working Smoke Detectors Save Lives

Sprinklers

  1. New Sioux Falls apartments will need fire sprinklers
  2. Counties pursue different courses on fire safety (Illinois)
  3. Sprinklers prove effectiveness in apartment fire
  4. Residential Sprinkler Systems

Wildland Fire Safety

  1. Desire for wild spaces ignites U.S. fire insurance hazard
  2. 5 Ways to Prepare Your Property for Wildfire Now
  3. Texas Residents Urged to Use Care With Labor Day Fires

Safety tips and reminders

  1. Children fire safety tips (Fiji)
  2. Tenn. Fire Marshal’s office urges older adults to take fire-safety measures

Other Safety News

  1. Chief Kyle Minick receives Bringing Safety Home Award
  2. New NFPA report describes fires in religious and funeral properties

Fire Prevention News: International

  1. Smoke alarm fitted by the fire service saved woman, 83, from Hemel Hempstead (UK)
  2. Fire Risk Massively Reduced by Home Visits
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