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As Snow Storms and Icy Temperatures Continue, CSA Group Offers Urban Cold Weather Survival Tips for a Safer Winter

CLEVELAND, OHIO -- (Marketwired) -- 02/05/14 -- Temperatures are frigid, snow is blowing and ice is abundant across much of the continent as we face one of the coldest winters on record. With more winter storms and cold temperatures on the way, it's essential to remain vigilant and be prepared to deal with potential power outages, loss of heat and severe weather-related conditions.

CSA Group, a leader in public safety, testing and certification, offers the following five urban winter survival tips to help reduce hazards in your home and be ready for almost anything else the cold weather throws your way.

1.  A working carbon monoxide alarm can save your life: Carbon monoxide is a
    colourless, odourless, lethal gas, and if your home uses fuel-burning
    appliances, such as a gas fireplace or furnace, you could be at risk of
    carbon monoxide exposure. Make sure all fuel-burning appliances are
    properly ventilated when in use, and ensure you have a working carbon
    monoxide alarm with a battery backup and a certification mark, such as
    CSA Group, to ensure it's been tested to the applicable standards for
    safety and performance.

2.  Ensure your gas fireplace is safe: Besides their decorative qualities,
    gas fireplaces can provide comfortable, economical and supplemental
    heating for your living space. However, before using gas fireplaces, it
    is important to conduct routine inspections and maintenance. The
    appliance's control compartments, burners, vents and circulating air
    passageways must be kept clean and clothing or other flammable material
    should not be placed on or near the fireplace. A fireplace should be
    inspected before each use and checked annually by a qualified
    professional serviceperson.

3.  Use space heaters with care: Space heaters are designed to heat a chilly
    room, not to dry clothes, heat food, warm your bed, or thaw frozen pipes
    - misuse can lead to serious injuries, fatalities and fires. When using
    a space heater in your home, be sure to follow all safety precautions to
    prevent fire, scorching, carbon monoxide and indoor air pollutants. Look
    for a certification mark, such as CSA Group, on the space heater to
    ensure it is certified by an accredited organization and safe for indoor

4.  Keep outdoor appliances outdoors: When faced with a power outage, it can
    be tempting to use outdoor appliances to heat your home, but that choice
    can be deadly. Never use an outdoor fuel-powered generator, BBQ, camping
    stove, lantern or other outdoor appliance inside your home or garage
    without ventilation. The fumes from these appliances can be lethal in
    enclosed spaces.

5.  Be careful with power generators: In the event of a power outage, use of
    generators can offer access to light and warmth. When using a generator,
    be sure to check it's rated for the amount of electricity required. To
    prevent shock, it should be properly grounded and never connected to a
    home's wiring, which could send high-voltage currents or "backfeed" to
    outside power lines. Backfeed could be fatal to anyone who touches the
    power line and may cause additional damage to a home.

Most importantly, use all your devices according to the manufacturer's instructions and keep a copy of the warnings and instructions on-hand.

About CSA Group

CSA Group is an independent, not-for-profit membership association dedicated to safety, social good and sustainability. Its knowledge and expertise encompass standards development; training and advisory solutions; global testing and certification services across key business areas including hazardous location and industrial, plumbing and construction, medical, safety and technology, appliances and gas, alternative energy, lighting and sustainability; as well as consumer product evaluation services. The CSA certification mark appears on billions of products worldwide. For more information about CSA Group visit www.csagroup.org.

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