How to prevent a Christmas tree fire
Here’s some advice and information from Capital City Fire/Rescue about how to prevent fires during this holiday season:
When showcasing a live tree in your home, the combination of tree dryness, electrical malfunction with lights and poorly located heating sources can make for a deadly combination. Follow these safety precautions to keep trees at bay:
- Fresh trees are less likely to catch fire, so look for a tree with vibrant green needles that are hard to pluck and don’t break easily from its branches. The tree shouldn’t be shedding its needles readily.
- Always place your tree away from heat sources like fireplaces, radiators, candles, heat vents or lights, and keep the tree base filled with water to avoid a dry out.
- Make sure all your indoor and outdoor Christmas lights have been tested in a lab by the UL or ETL/ITSNA for safety, and throw out any damaged lights.
- Any lights you use outdoors must be labeled suitable for exterior placement, and be sure to plug them into a ground-fault circuit interrupter protected receptacle.
- Keep all your holiday candles away from your Christmas tree, surrounding furniture and décor.
- Bedtime means lights off! Don’t forget to turn your Christmas tree lights off each night.
When your tree begins to drop its needles, it’s time to say goodbye to your evergreen foliage until next year. According to the National Fire Protection Association, even a well-watered tree should be taken down within four weeks of being brought into the home. If you decorated your real tree right after Thanksgiving, it should be discarded the week after Christmas, not New Year’s Day. This is because by the end of the holiday season, Christmas trees are extremely dry, and present a heightened fire hazard.
Capital City Fire/Rescue wishes you a safe and happy holiday season.