(WAFB) - Because of the freezing temperatures, Louisiana State Fire Marshal Butch Browning wants to send an important message to the public, especially when it comes to using space heaters.
"People are overloading circuits. They're plugging the space heater in with other appliances. You should never do that. You should also never use an extension cord. That space heater needs to plug directly into a receptacle," said Browning.
Browning also says it's important that people turn their space heaters off before they go to bed. He also says residents need to have a working smoke alarm, and a fire escape plan that includes at least two ways out of the home.
Unfortunately, there have been 23 fire-related deaths in Louisiana since December 15, many of which were caused by unattended heating sources. Studies have consistently shown that more than 80 percent of those killed in fires die from inhaling smoke.
Browning also urges residents to check on elderly friends, family, and neighbors and to bring pets inside.
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