Holiday Fire Safety Tips
- Home fires during the holiday season often involve cooking, Christmas trees, candles and holiday decorations.
- Unattended cooking is the leading cause of U.S. home fires and home fire injuries, with most cooking fires involving the stovetop.
- If you have a cooking fire, get out and stay out! When you leave, close the door behind you to help contain the fire. Call 911 immediately after you leave
- Candles are widely used in homes throughout the holidays; December is the peak month for home candle fires.
- When burning candles, keep them at least 12” away from anything that can burn, and remember to blow them out when you leave the room or go to bed.
- U.S. fire departments annually respond to an average of 250 structure fires caused by Christmas trees. Nearly half of them are caused by electrical problems, and one in four resulted from a heat source that’s too close to the tree.
- If you have an artificial tree, be sure it’s labeled, certified or identified by the manufacturer as fire-retardant. If you choose a fresh tree, make sure the green needles don’t fall off when touched; before placing it in the stand, cut 1-2” from the base of the trunk. Add water to the tree stand, and be sure to water it daily.
- Use lights that have the label of an independent testing laboratory, and make sure you know whether they are designed for indoor or outdoor use. Replace any string of lights with worn or broken cords, or loose bulb connections. Connect no more than three strands of mini-string sets and a maximum of 50 bulbs for screw-in bulbs.