Milford fire chief offers winter safety tips

Milford Fire Chief John Cooper spoke about winter safety at the Dec. 7 city council meeting. He gave tips about avoiding house fires when the weather gets cold.

“Think more clearly on how you are going to heat your homes,” he said. “If there is someone having issues, contact us and we’ll help. You know, there’s a lot of agencies around the county as well as the city that can help if you need some help or have an emergency. Use safe practices around the house. Also if you are going to put up a live tree, keep it watered.”

After the council meeting Cooper had some more suggestions. “Burn seasoned wood if you use wood,” he said. “Make sure the flue is open and the chimney is clear. Over the years, creosote builds up in there.”

Cooper said that he hated to hear about people using their ovens to heat the house. “If you do use the oven, make sure it’s safe. Block it off if there are kids around.”

He said that if you use auxiliary heaters, make sure the cords are good. He said not to use extension cords and to fill kerosene heaters outside.

He also advised homeowners to keep hydrants clear of snow and ice so that they will be immediately visible in the event of a fire.

In other news, Cooper announced at the meeting that the Firefighters’ Club Community Hall located at the Milford Shopping Center will be closing at the end of December. It has been the home of local bingo games which helped to raise money for the club and its charitable activities. Cooper said that keeping the hall open has become too costly.

“We are not able to continue keeping it going,” he said.

Mayor Ralph Vilardo, Jr. said that the Community Hall and the bingo games will be sorely missed.

Also, Cooper told the Milford City Council on Dec. 7 that the cookie sale held by the Historic Milford Association during the Hometown Holidays celebration established a new category in the Guinness Book of World Records. He said that more than 7,000 cookies were sold, establishing a world record.

Hometown Holidays took place Nov. 26 and 27 in downtown Milford. Money raised by the cookie sale will buy toys for patients at the Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center.