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Renters face unique challenges with apartment fires

Rossford Fire Department (WNWO/Marcus Espinoza).

With two large apartment fires in less than a month in Toledo, safety officials are reminding renters how to properly prepare themselves during an emergency.

"In apartments, you really want to make sure you're not overloading electrical outlets," said Rossford Fire Chief Josh Drouard.

The ability to know how to function a fire extinguisher is also critical he says.

"You can remember a simple phrase called PASS. Which is pull the pin, aim the hose, squeeze the handle, and sweep back and fourth at the base of the fire. It doesn't matter if you're using a water extinguisher...or if you have a carbon dixoide extinguisher, the extinguishing method is still the same, using PASS," said Chief Drouard.

He also mentioned that apartment complexes have a especially difficult time with handling fires because of how many units are packed together. Another factor can also be when they were built, the chief saying if they were built in the 70's, many of those buildings did not have as strict firewall codes as today.

He also said most importantly, do not wait to call for help.

"Make sure you have a working smoke detector, always try to have two ways out, and call for help early, don't try to put out the fire, if you see smoke and you think something is on fire, dial 911 and get it started there fast," said Chief Drouard.

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