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OKLAHOMA CITY — Winter officially begins in just two weeks, and Insurance Commissioner John Doak is warning Oklahomans about the dangers of residential fires during cold weather.

Doak says proper maintenance of home heating systems can protect families from fire disasters and higher insurance rates. Last year, insurance companies paid out more than $90 million in claims for fire-related damages.

Doak says smoke detectors can save lives. Many fire departments, including those in Oklahoma City and Tulsa, offer free smoke detectors, batteries and installation to residents who request them.

Doak also recommends cleaning fireplaces and chimneys and keeping flammable materials away from furnaces, fireplaces and other heating units. He says that with a little caution, Oklahomans can all remain safe and healthy during the fall and winter seasons.


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