Dec 28 2016

The Mayor’s Corner 12/28/2016

Winter brings more use of fireplaces and wood burning stoves. Weiser Fire Chief, Kerry Nyce asked me to share the following information to help protect against chimney fires this winter.
Chimney fires are often caused by burning wood that is too green and heavy induced with pitch and tightening the air dampers down too tight which causes creosote build up in the chimney. Creosote is the unburied particles that solidify in the chimneys. The creosote causes the diameter of the chimney to get smaller, much like the narrowing of arteries in the body. These fires can go from not serious to the total loss of a home.
You may hear what sounds like a train entering or jet plane landing on your house. If so, go outside and look at your chimney, the flame will be like an after burner on a fighter jet. The smoke may not be venting properly and the Fire may not want to free burn. If you think you have a chimney fire, call 911, get out and stay out of the house until the Fire Department arrives and investigates your situation. Some people purchase chimney fire extinguishers but you should
still call the Department to inspect your stove, chimneys, pipe or brick.
To help prevent chimney fires, burn good hard firewood and adjust your dampers appropriately.
Another reminder: when shopping, getting a haircut or running in to pay a bill, remember to turn your vehicle off. Gas fumes entering businesses while the vehicle idles outside the doorways can cause serious health problems during winter inversions. The time it takes to do the business is minimal compared to the discomfort to others.
The Idaho Housing and Financing Association put out the 2016 Community Report and it has some interesting statistics about Idaho housing. The average age of homeowners is 37 years old and the average family size is 2.6. The average borrower income is $47,236 and the average down payment is $4,703. The number of new loans financed in Idaho in 2016 was
7,813 totally $1.1 billion. Interesting information. We have seen an increase in building in our area too.i thought these statistics might be interesting as we begin a new year.
A new outdoor opportunity opened for winter recreationists this year. The Rolling Hills Golf Course has groomed a cross country trail around the course. The cost is $5 for daily unlimited trail use. Snowshoes may also be a possibility. The course has lots of room as long as skiers stay off the greens. Get some exercise and stop in for a cup of hot chocolate or another beverage.
Have a Happy New Year in 2017. Please remember if you will be celebrating this week and choose to enjoy an adult beverage, do not drink and drive. Be sure to have a designated driver who will stay responsible and get everyone home safely. “See you next year.”