Holiday Tree Safety- Avoid a Fire Damage!
Flickering lights and winter greens are hallmarks of the holiday season. Unfortunately, a beautiful Christmas tree can become a fire hazard if not maintained properly. Follow these simple tips to avoid a fire damage and ensure a happy and safe holiday season!
First and foremost, start with a quality tree. When purchasing an artificial tree, consider selecting one labelled “Fire Resistant”. If you prefer a live tree, pick one with fresh, green needles that do not fall off when touched. Make sure the base is cut at a 45 degree angle before placing it in water.
Keep your live tree hydrated! Dry Christmas trees are dangerously combustible. A small fire that spreads to a dry tree will grow very quickly. The average tree can use as much as one gallon of water per day, so make a point to check the water level daily. Not only will this keep your tree safe, it will also help maintain its plump and full appearance.
Find the perfect spot for your tree. According to the National Fire Protection Association, more than two of every five decoration fires occur because decorations are placed too close to a heat source. One-third of home decoration fires are started by candles. Keep your tree at least three feet away from any heat source, like fireplaces, radiators, candles and heat vents. Make sure the tree is not blocking an exit.
Inspect light strands before use. Those with worn, frayed wire or loose connections are unsafe and should be discarded. Purchase lights with safety labels and follow manufacturer instructions on how many strands to connect. Don’t leave your lit tree unattended, always turn off lights before leaving home or going to sleep.
Winter months are the leading time of year for home fires. Avoid a devastating fire in your home by practicing fire safety year-round. Make sure your home has working smoke alarms. Test them once a month and replace the batteries yearly.
When the holiday season comes to a close, discard your live tree promptly. Many communities offer Christmas tree recycling. Check with your local recycling center for drop-off locations. These centers will often chip and shred your tree for use as mulch or soft bedding for parks and playgrounds in your community.
At SERVPRO of Society Hill, we have years of experience cleaning and repairing residential fire and smoke damage. If your home is impacted by fire this season, call the experts you can trust at 1-800-SERVPRO.