What to never plug into a power strip

ORLANDO, Fla. – According to the US Consumer Product Safety Commission, every year electric extension cords cause about 4,000 trips to hospital emergency rooms.

The misuse of electric extension cords and power strips also causes more than 3,000 house fires every year, killing about 50 people and injuring over 250. Here are some rules on how to use power strips correctly to keep you and your loved ones safe.

To keep this from becoming a fire hazard, rule number one is to never overload your power strips. If the power strip or extension cord feels hot, that is a sign that it is overloaded and may start a fire.

Never plug high power-capacity appliances, like space heaters, refrigerators, or microwave and toaster ovens into power strips or extension cords. These appliances need to be plugged into a wall outlet directly.

Always plug power strips directly into the wall. It is OK temporarily to plug an extension cord to a power strip, but never a power strip to an extension cord. Also, do not connect multiple extension cords together.

Don’t use indoor power strips outdoors. If the power strip gets damaged by rain or snow, it can damage anything plugged into it.

Never place rugs over extension cords. They can get easily damaged while being walked on and since the cords are out of view, the damage is, too, thus leaving exposed wires that can cause a fire.

Contributor(s) to this news report include: Milvionne Chery, Producer; Jamison Koczan, Videographer and Roque Correa, Editor.