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Posted on: May 11, 2020

After Three Significant Barn Fires Officials Issue Warning on Heating Appliances

NEWS and ALERTS newsflash 2

Three recent fires in Loudoun County have been attributed to the use of heating equipment and prompts safety warnings from the Fire Marshal.

Between May 1, 2020 and Sunday, May 10, 2020, firefighters across Loudoun County have responded to three barn fire incidents resulting in a combined $684,000 in damages. The first incident was a barn fire on May 1 in Purcellville, followed by another in Middleburg on May 3, and finally a barn fire yesterday morning in Round Hill. 

“In just the past several days, these three fires have damaged over a half million dollars in property and resulted in the unfortunate loss of pets and livestock,” said Fire System Chief Keith Johnson. “These fires are preventable and by following simple safety tips you can reduce the hazards posed by these heating appliances to your family, pets and livestock.”

The Loudoun County Fire Marshal’s Office encourages residents to follow these safety precautions:

  • Use only UL-listed heat lamps and follow the manufacturer’s instructions.
  • Ensure heat producing appliances, such as heat lamps, are installed at least three feet away from anything that can burn.
  • Check regularly that the appliance installation is secure, and ensure heating appliances cannot be accidentally knocked over by animals or people.
  • Run cords in locations where animals cannot reach them and/or install additional outlets.
  • Ensure electrical circuits are not overloaded. Heat lamps use more amperage than regular lights.
  • Schedule regular inspections of your barn and outbuildings for fire hazards.

Middleburg Barn Heat lamp 5-3-20

For additional fire and life safety information, please visit the Loudoun County Fire Marshal’s Office website at Loudoun.gov/fireprevention or call 703-737-8600.

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