Fire Safety Tips for the Holidays

From holiday candles to Christmas trees, dangling garlands and fireplaces, seasonal decorations can often be hazardous if not properly put up with care, or if it’s placed next to a potentially dangerous item. Follow our fire safety tips to keep your holidays safe for you, your family and your guests.

  1. Inspect your lights before hanging

Don’t plug more than 3 strings into each other, throw out light strings that are worn or broken, and be sure to always unplug the lights before leaving the house or going to sleep.

  1. Keep your Christmas tree healthy

Water it every day because dry needles and wood catch fire more easily. Just two or three days without water is enough to dry it out.

  1. Place your Menorah or Kinara safely

Keep flammable items, including curtains and holiday decorations, at least 3-feet away from your candles. Place your menorah or kinara on a non-flammable surface to catch the melting candle wax, such as a tray lined with aluminum foil. Never leave lit candles unattended.

  1. Use space heaters with care

They should only be used as temporary heating, should never be used with an extension cord, and should be plugged into a 20-amp circuit. Keep away from Christmas trees, because according to the USFA, heat sources too close to a tree account for 20 percent of Christmas tree fires.

  1. Prepare your fireplace before lighting logs

Keep flammable items, such as wrapping paper (burning gift wrap is extremely dangerous), rugs and clothing, at least three feet away from your fireplace flames. Use a fire screen to keep embers and logs from escaping, and make sure all embers are fully extinguished before you turn in for the night.

Facts about home holiday fires

  • One of every four home Christmas tree fires is caused by electrical problems.
  • Although Christmas tree fires are not common, when they do occur, they are more likely to be serious. On average, one of every 32 reported home Christmas tree fires results in a death compared to an average of one death per 143 total reported home fires.
  • A heat source too close to the tree causes one in every four Christmas tree fires.
  • The top three days for home candle fires are Christmas, New Year’s Day, and Christmas Eve.
  • Candles start two out of five home decoration structure fires.

Keep your holidays merry and bright by making these fire safety tips a priority during this festive season. Call or visit our website us to learn more about how to keep your home and family safe with annual chimney and fireplace maintenance visits.