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Aug 18, 2019
Christmas Tree Safety
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By Ex-Chief Jerry Galu
December 16, 2018

Seconds vs Minutes, Watering your Christmas Tree Reduces the Fire Hazard and buys you time.

Every year in the U.S., fire departments respond to an estimated 210 home fires involving Christmas trees. Even though Christmas tree fires are infrequent, when they occur, they can be dangerous and costly. These fires cause an annual average of 6 deaths, 16 injuries, and $16.2 million in property damage. The good news is that by keeping your Christmas tree watered, you can enjoy the holidays with a beautiful and safer Christmas tree

Christmas Tree Fire Safety Tips

The video suggests that keeping your Christmas tree watered can reduce its fire risk. The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) suggests several steps that you can take to reduce the risk of a Christmas tree fire in your home.

Choose a healthy tree with fresh, green needles that do not fall off when touched.
Immediately before placing a tree in its stand, cut 5 cm (2 in.) from the base of the trunk; this can help the tree to draw up water. If the cut surface is allowed to dry, it will reduce the water uptake to the tree.
Always keep the tree well-watered. Make sure to check the water level in the stand daily.
Make sure that the tree is at least three feet away from any heat source (e.g. space heaters, candles, fireplaces, heat vents, or lights).
Make sure that the tree does not block an exit.
Only use decorative lights that have the label of a recognized testing laboratory. Make sure light bulbs, strings, and connections are not broken or damaged in any way.
Always turn off tree lights before leaving home or going to bed.
Never use lit candles to decorate the tree.
Get rid of the tree after Christmas or when it is dry and keep it away from your home/garage. Of the ten days with the largest shares of Christmas tree fires, none were before Christmas.
Check with your local community to find a recycling program.

Hyperlinks: Christmas Tree Safety Fact Sheet


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Highland Falls Fire Department
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