Each year fires during the holiday season injure 2,600 individuals and cause over $930 million in damage! Avoid becoming a statistic by using these few simple tips:
- If using a fresh Christmas tree, make sure that the needles are green and hard to pull back from the branches. Needles should not break or fall off if the tree is freshly cut. Keep your tree away from all heat sources, and keep the stand filled with water. Don't leave it up for more than two weeks, to avoid having the tree become dry. To see a Christmas tree go up in flames in a typical home setting, visit the website.
- It takes only a few seconds for the room to become engulfed in flame and thick smoke.
- If you are using an artificial tree, make sure it is flame retardant.
- Maintain your holiday lights - make sure that there are no frayed wires, and that lights used outdoors are rated outdoor use. Don't overload electrical outlets, or link more than three light strands unless the directions indicate it is safe.
- Never burn holiday wrapping paper in a fireplace - it can throw off sparks and produce a chemical build up in the home that could cause an explosion.
- Candles are a significant source of home fires, especially during holidays. Make sure they are in stable holders and place them where they can't be easily knocked over. NEVER leave the home with candles burning!