How quickly can a fire from a space heater spread?

"GMA" looks into how you can keep your home safe this winter from space heater fires.
2:33 | 02/20/19

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Transcript for How quickly can a fire from a space heater spread?
We have a "Gma" consumer alert about space heaters. The national fire protection association reports that they account for 50% of all home heating fires. So ABC's Stephanie Ramos took a look at how fast the flames can spread and what you can do to protect your home. Reporter: Debra Magee raced to her home in New York just two months ago after getting that dreaded call her house was on fire. All I could see was a black cloud, the first thing was where is Tyler? Reporter: One of her sons was inside escaping right before the home was engulfed if flames melting two cars. This is where my son Tyler was sitting. Reporter: Officials tell "Gma" the fire was an accident caused by a space heater. In just the past few weeks these fires in Illinois, Pennsylvania, D.C. And Yonkers, New York, all associated with space heaters. Space heater fires accounting for almost 50% of U.S. Home heating fires and 86% of associated deaths. It's not because the device or the equipment is unsafe. It's because people aren't using them safely.ter: "Gma" teaming up with Montgomery county fire and rescue service to demonstrate the potential dangers of space heaters and how to stay safe. First, how hot can they really get? We just turned it on and already at 100 degrees. You see it spiking to 300 degrees. If you were to touch that, you could burn yourself. Reporter: Her next demonstration, how quickly a fire can spread when a space heater is too close to combustible items. This mock living room has a space eater places too close the couch and the safety feature an automatic shutdown if the space heater overheats has been turned off. You can see smoke already. Reporter: In just a few conds that space heater started to smoking. Look at it coming up from underneath the couch now. We'll step away. Reporter: The flames build. Firefighters in protective gear step in to roof some of our cameras as it quickly flashes over. In just minutes it caught fire and has engulfed this entire area. Reporter: Firefighters putting out the blaze after five minutes. You could not survive this. Reporter: To stay safe keep space heaters at these three feet away from anything that can your honor about. Never use an extension cord, plug the heater directly into the wall outlet and never leave a space heater unattended. Stephanie Ramos, ABC news, gaithersburg, Maryland.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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