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Home fires increase in winter months, and the Red Cross says you should prepare now

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It’s Fire Prevention Week, and the American Red Cross of Southern Missouri says this is a good time to test your smoke alarm.

The threat of home fires increases with cold weather, according to the American Red Cross.

The Missouri and Arkansas Red Cross region responds to 34 percent more home fires in November through March than in warmer months. Cooking and heating equipment are the most common cause of fires during the winter.

The Red Cross urges households to test smoke alarms and come up with and practice two-minute fire escape drills. Teach children what a smoke alarm sounds like, and talk about fire safety and what to do in an emergency.

For more information, visit redcross.org/fire.