Thursday, November 6, 2008

My comments to the Public Safety Committee Regarding home heating

See the Register Story Here by Liz Benton

Home Heating Safety Hearing
November 5, 2008
Public Safety Committee
Alexander Rhodeen – Chair

Mr. Chair & Members of the committee,

Thank you for giving this important issue a public hearing. I would like to start by giving a bit a background on how this item came up. Alderwomen Jones & I were discussing the concerns and calls from constituents’ regarding paying their home heating bills this winter season. We came to the conclusion that many of those with the least ability to cover their traditional home heating costs will turn to unconventional methods of heating their homes.

We both know from news reports and 1st hand accounts of people heating their homes by turning on the oven and opening the door or burning charcoal briquettes or propane gas grills in the house as well as wood. These are known dangers as they all give off the silent killer Carbon Monoxide.

Other folks will use electric or kerosene space heaters. These heating methods are a bit safer but still pose a danger if the resident is not vigilant in turning off the heating element when leaving the home or in refilling the kerosene.

The good new is that there some programs available to help out those in need Community Action Agency (CCA), the Federal LIHEAP as well as the State of Connecticut.

The problem is how we get the message out to the residents to inform them of:

The dangers in alternative home heating
The resources out there to help folks heat their homes this winter season.

Therefore Alderwomen Jones and I called for this hearing to hear from CAO Smuts & Chief Grant on how we – as a City – can get both messages across to the public.

Thank you,

Mordechai Sandman
Alderman Ward 28

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