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If your home is like most, you have a “junk drawer.” You may organize it every time you do your spring cleaning or keep piling more “stuff” in eventually having no clue what half the “stuff” is? Junk drawers usually consist of a collection of rubber bands, paper clips, pens, scraps of paper, take-out menus, coupons, spare keys, batteries, and much more. Often times, it becomes the “black hole” for everything that doesn’t have another home. Why? Because junk drawers just happen. But, did you know that junk drawers can be dangerous?

I am not talking about reaching your hand in and getting stuck by a safety pin or tack. I am not talking about paper cuts either. As an Amherst, New Hampshire family learned, a single 9-volt battery, something metal like a paper clip, and something flammable like a piece of scrap paper are all you need. The couple’s home caught fire because of these common items in junk drawers nationwide. The prongs of the battery apparently came in contact with a metal item (possibly a paper clip) and some paper. The metal conducted the battery current, and the paper worked as fuel. According to the fire marshal, “the fire spread to Post-It Notes, paper, and other flammable items in the drawer producing smoke throughout the first floor of the home."

According to the fire department, here is a list of other household items that can turn into fire hazards:

  • Electrical outlets overloaded with extension cords
  • Lithium batteries stored in the same place as clothing
  • Lint that builds up in the dryer vent or filter
  • Space heaters placed too closely to curtains or other flammable materials
  • Overheated laptop computers left on soft surfaces such as a bed
  • Gasoline cans stored near dirty rags in the garage
  • Fireplaces from too much soot build-up

Make time to de-junk your junk drawer for your safety and it will be more organized in the process.

Mark Bello has thirty-five years experience as a trial lawyer and thirteen years as an underwriter and situational analyst in the lawsuit funding industry. He is the owner and founder of Lawsuit Financial Corporation which helps provide legal finance cash flow solutions and consulting when necessities of life litigation funding is needed by a plaintiff involved in pending, personal injury, litigation. Bello is a Justice Pac member of the American Association for Justice, Sustaining and Justice Pac member of the Michigan Association for Justice, Member of Public Justice and Public Citizen, Business Associate of the Florida, Mississippi, Connecticut, Texas, and Tennessee Associations for Justice, and Consumers Attorneys of California, member of the American Bar Association, the State Bar of Michigan and the Injury Board.

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