It's been a busy start to 2018 for the San Antonio Fire Department, News Radio 1200 WOAI reports.

Chief Charles Hood says since January 1, Monday, there have been 36 fire calls, and seventeen of them turned into full alarm fires.

Hood says what concerns him the most are the cases where people were using 'unothorodox methods' to stay warm during the current cold snap.

"A gentleman was using a barbecue grill inside of his house," Hood said.  "That will cause a carbon monoxide buildup inside your home."

Hood says he doesn't begrudge anybody the desire to stay warm in subzero temperatures, but you have to use common sense.

"We need to educate them that having such heating devices in your house can potentially kill you."

One man was killed on Tuesday when his clothes caught on fire as he tried to use the kitchen stove to keep the house warm.  Another fire on Tuesday killed five pets.

This morning a squatter in a northwest side home was found using a 'makeshift oven' which he had built in a bedroom, to build a fire and keep warm, and all he succeeded in doing was setting the house on fire.

Firefighters should get a break.  The subfreezing temperatures are over, and we will be seeing highs in the fifties and sixties over the coming days, with lows in from the mid thirties to mid forties.