Many apartment fires are caused by electrical problems. These include improper use of extension cords, damaged flexible cords, overloaded circuits, and defective appliances.
- Electrical installations and wiring throughout the complex should be installed by a qualified electrician, in accordance with the National Electrical Code.
- Extension cords: Do not use these as a replacement for permanent electrical wiring. Extension cords are designed for temporary use only. They should be kept free from damage, and the wiring size should be appropriate for the amperage of the appliance it is supplying. Use only UL listed cords.
- Flexible cords: Maintain flexible cords to appliances (i.e. lamps, toasters, etc.) in good condition and place them where they are not subject to damage. Replace damaged, frayed, dried, or cracked cords.
- Overloaded circuits: These can occur when too many appliances are plugged into one circuit, exceeding the capacity of the wiring, heating the wiring, and possibly starting a fire. Never plug in more appliances than the receptacle will accept. Two plugs are usually allowed in a typical household receptacle.
- Never allow tenants to run extension cords from one apartment to another to supply power to an apartment without electricity.