Aiken Red Cross responded to record number of fires in February

Aiken Red Cross responded to more fires in February than previous years

AIKEN, SC (WFXG) - The Red Cross of Aiken helped over 400 people get back on their feet last month, after house fires left them with no place to turn.

Director Derek Dugan said many fires began during the bad weather, when the power went out and people wanted their lights back on.

Dugan said, "Many people were hooking up power themselves, not using authorized electricians and were attempting to heat homes in ways that were not safe methods."

The total number of fires the Red Cross assisted in came to 146. The cost for each individual person who needed assistance was over 600 dollars. Dugan says, now, they want to remind everyone to use caution.

Dugan said, "Never use a generator to heat a home, never use an oven to heat a stove and always pay attention when cooking."

The Red Cross also recommends if you're using a space heater, keep it on a hard surface and keep anything that can catch fire at least three feet away.

Clean cooking surfaces on a regular basis to prevent grease buildup.

Purchase a fire extinguisher to keep in the kitchen.

To find out how you can help, visit or call 1-800-RED-CROSS.

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