If you get a generator, be safe if you need to use it

Firefighters say keep it away from the home

MARTIN COUNTY, Fla. - Daniel Ebinger has his generator ready to run if he needs it. The Stuart man says when some of his neighbors get generators, they ask him for help.

RELATED: More generator safety tips | Hurricane Guide

“(They ask me if their) generators are not starting to what size generators do they need or what size extension cord should they use for appliances and electronics," said Ebinger.

Ebinger says before buying a generator, think about what you’ll want to run after a storm.

“It gives you peace of mind knowing you can get through it pretty easily," said Ebinger.

At Martin County Fire Station 16 in Jensen Beach, they have a huge generator to power the firehouse.

“They run for an hour every week to maintain it," said Lt. Rick Sterl.

But for smaller home units, the lieutenant has some basic safety advice on where to put them.

“That’s at least 5 feet away from any windows, doors, openings. Don’t run the generator inside the structure, you’re going to have CO inside the house," said Sterl.

Getting a carbon monoxide detector is also a must with a generator says Sterl, and use a heavy gauge cord.
“Once it’s been running for any particular time, if you’re going to refuel, you need to shut the unit off, and let it cool before you refuel to prevent a fire," said Sterl.

Make sure that the gas you are using is also stored in the proper containers and never use a generator in an attached garage even with the door open.

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