From the assistant editor

Pass it on

Wed, 01/18/2023 - 8:45am

Wiscasset Fire Chief Rob Bickford’s December report, released ahead of the Jan. 17 selectmen’s meeting, contains winter home safety tips worth our passing along. 

One is to keep chimneys and all venting clean. The department had two chimney fire calls in December, both caused by creosote buildup in the chimney and stovepipe, Bickford said. He said, if you are burning wood, have a professional clean and inspect your chimney.

His other advice, a two-parter, also stems from a December call, this one to a carbon monoxide alarm sounding in a basement during a power outage. It turned out a generator’s exhaust was being blown toward the home and leaking into the basement through a drier vent.

Bickford said you should have and maintain carbon monoxide detectors, and position generators to send the exhaust into the open air.

These and other tips we share from local and state public safety agencies, like recent announcements on ice safety, may be old hat, winter basics in Maine. But in winter, including lately, people fall through ice, some, not all, surviving; so ice safety and other reminders are worth the agencies’ time and the short time it takes Mainers and visitors to read them. Thanks for reading these.

Week’s positive parting thought: At press time Tuesday, Wiscasset’s latest broadband talks were hours away. Whatever next steps, if any, are decided, kudos apply to the broadband committee for all its studying and talking on a topic with multiple moving pieces, and to selectmen for their numerous discussions also. It has been important work.