Generator Fire Hazards
The following was copied directly from: https://www.firstenergycorp.com/help/safety/using-electricity/backup-generators.html#hazards
"Backup generators can pose a risk of shock and electrocution, especially if they are operated in wet conditions. Because generators must be operated outdoors, it is important to pay special attention to weather and environmental conditions to prevent electrical accidents.
Follow these important electrical safety tips at all times when operating your backup generator:
- Operate the generator on a dry surface where water cannot reach it, or puddle or drain under it.
- Dry your hands, if wet, before touching the generator.
- If you must use a generator in wet conditions, protect the generator from moisture (as described in the owner's manual) to help avoid shock or electrocution hazard. This should be done without operating the generator indoors or near openings to any building that can be occupied in order to help avoid CO hazards.
- NEVER try to power home wiring by plugging the generator into a wall outlet, a practice known as "backfeeding." This is extremely dangerous and presents an electrocution risk to utility workers and neighbors served by the same circuit. It also bypasses some of the built-in household circuit protection devices.
When connecting appliances to the generator using an extension cord, follow these steps:
- Use heavy-duty extension cords that are specifically designed for outdoor use.
- Make sure the wattage rating for each cord exceeds the total wattage of all appliances connected to it.
- Use extension cords that are long enough to allow the generator to be placed outdoors and far away from windows, doors and vents to the home or to other structures that could be occupied.
- Check that the entire length of each cord is free of cuts or tears and that the plug has all three (or four) prongs.
- Protect the cord from getting pinched or crushed, and follow all cord safety labels including any limits on cord length.
In addition, use care when handling and storing fuel for your generator to avoid potential fire hazards:
- Never store fuel for your generator inside the home. Gasoline, propane, kerosene, and other flammable liquids should be stored outside of living areas in properly-labeled, non-glass safety containers. Do not store any of these substances near a fuel-burning appliance, such as a natural gas water heater in a garage.
- Before refueling a generator, turn it off and let it cool down for at least two minutes before removing the fuel cap. Gasoline spilled on hot engine parts could ignite. Never refuel a running portable generator."
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