CHRISTMAS TREE SAFETY
Throughout December you'll probably hear about Christmas tree fire safety a dozen times. It may all sound redundant, but there is a reason this information is everywhere. While Christmas tree fires may not be the most common cause, these fires tend to be the most disastrous. On average, Christmas tree fires have caused $14.8 million in annual property damage, and 1 of every 32 home fires beginning with a Christmas tree have ended in a loss of life.
It's because of this information that we consistently provide safety tips - not that we think you haven't heard it before - but because it is so important to be aware of. When choosing your tree, and setting up your decorations, please take these tips into consideation.
- Choose a tree with fresh, green needles that do not fall off when touched
- If the tree was already cut when you picked it up, we recommend you recut another 2" from the base of the trunk to improve water uptake
- Your tree should be at least 3 feet away from any heat source such as fireplaces, radiators, heaters, or candles
- A tree should not block any exits from your residence
- Water should be added to your stand daily, and the tree should always be well hydrated
- Use Christmas lights that are listed by a qualified tester - and make note if the lights are for indoor or outdoor use
- Examine each strand of lights as you take them out of storage, and look for worn/broken cords, or loose bulb connections.
- Do not connect too many strands to one power source; read manufacurer's instructions for how many light strands can be connected
- Always turn off lights before leaving home or going to bed
- Finally, as we've mentioned before, during the winter you can also expect a number of power outages due to weighted tree branches pulling down wires. This becomes particularly dangerous when dealing with excessive power being drawn. Use surge protectors to protect your house from voltage spikes.
Those most important part of the holidays is to enjoy them. Please be safe this year, so all that is left for you to do is to spend time with family and friends.