Fire crews see increase in cold weather calls, issues tips for freezing temps

HARRISBURG, NC (WBTV) - When temperatures go down, calls and activity at local fire departments go up.

Harrisburg Fire says it is taking extra precautions in this winter weather and wants homeowners to do the same.

From extra bags of kitty litter to soak up hose water, to buckets of cold weather gear, firefighters say they are prepared to help families during this season.

"We've increased some of the equipment we're carrying to handle the cold weather," Harrisburg Fire PIO Dave Bradshaw says.

The crew says it has had a 30 percent increase in calls this week.

We have run busted water pipes from sprinkler systems every day for the last four days," Bradshaw says.

Pipes freeze overnight, then leak once the air temperatures rise again in the morning. Add that to carbon monoxide leaks and dangerous indoor heating solutions and you get a busy couple of days.

"We definitely have had an increase in call volume," Bradshaw says.

The crew says it has seen leaky gas fireplaces and indoor heaters placed too close to other objects.

"Make sure you're giving three feet of clearance on all sides of that heating device," Bradshaw says.

Firefighters say they have even seen outdoor grills placed inside for heat.

"People doing what they need to do to stay warm," Bradshaw added.

The department is asking people across the area to remember a few little things, including disconnecting water hoses, checking carbon monoxide detectors and leaving faucets on a drip. That and opening cabinets below the sinks is extra important.

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