Holiday Safety Tips
Christmas decorations can be a ton of fun. However, they are also the greatest fire hazard in you home. Take necessary precautions to ensure your holiday doesn't go up in flames.
- Use a fire retardant liquid for real Christmas trees and wreaths. When applied as directed, the solution forms an invisible non-combustible barrier that prevents branches and needles from igniting when they come in contact with a spark or flame.
- Keep your tree watered to prevent it from drying up and becoming more of a fire hazard. Cut off about two inches of the trunk to expose fresh wood for better water absorption.
- Place tree and presents away from fireplaces, radiators and other heat sources. Heated rooms dry out trees rapidly, so be sure to water your tree daily.
- Use only non-combustible or flame-resistant materials for decorating. In homes with small children, keep decorations with small, removable parts, or decorations that look like food out of the reach of children, as they could be swallowed or ingested. Artificial snow sprays can irritate lungs if inhaled. Read all labels and follow all directions closely to avoid injury.
- Make sure to check all cords, outlets, etc before plugging anything in. A faulty component could be the end of your tree and house. Also, Do Not Overload Electrical Outlets - Do not link more than three light strands, unless the directions indicate it is safe. Connect strings of lights to an extension cord before plugging the cord into the outlet. Make sure to periodically check the wires - they should not be warm to the touch.
- Blow out unattended candles.
- Indoors or outdoors, use only lights that have been tested for safety. Check each set of lights, new or old, for broken or cracked sockets, frayed or bare wires, or loose connections. Discard or repair damaged sets before use. Use no more than three standard-size sets of lights per single extension cord. Turn off when you are not around.
- Make an emergency plan to use in case of a fire or emergency in your home. See that each family member knows what to do and practice the plan. Also, a good thing to have in your house, if you do not already have one, is at least one fire extinguisher, as a safety precaution.