Disaster Tip of the Week: Christmas Tree Safety

by DisasterMOM on December 12, 2012 · 0 comments

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The Christmas season is a time of joy and celebration so don’t let holiday distractions keep you from Christmas tree safety precautions.

Each year, approximately 250 Christmas tree fires occur on both natural and artificial trees. The result is dozens of deaths and millions of dollars in damage. Once ignited, it takes only three seconds for the tree to be fully engulfed.

Be smart and set a few minutes aside to learn the best way to care for your tree. Your family and Saint Nick will thank you for it!

The National Safety Council recommends these Christmas Tree Safety Tips:

  • Select fresh green trees. If needles easily fall or break off then look for another tree. A tree trunk with “sap”  is your clue to a healthy tree.
  • Cut off about two inches of the trunk and put in a sturdy, water-holding stand.
  • Never let a fresh cut Christmas tree’s water reservoir go dry. The average Christmas tree will absorb over a gallon of water in the first hour after being cut and will absorb a quart or more water per day after that.
  • Select a location in your home away from any kind of heat sources like fireplaces, radiators, room heaters or other heated areas.
  • If you have small children or hyper active pets consider a table stand that raises the tree off of the ground and out of their reach. (This year we placed our 6 to 7 ft. tree on a higher table in front of the window. It  looks much bigger than the tree actually is and our dog can’t eat the ornaments!)
  • If you use an artificial tree, choose one that is tested and labeled as fire resistant. Artificial trees with built-in electrical systems should have the Underwriters Laboratory (UL) label.

  •  Always keep a fire extinguisher nearby and brush up on how to use.
  • Line-voltage holiday or decorative lights start an average of 170 home structure fires each year, according to the National Fire Protection Association. These fires cause approximately 7 deaths, 17 injuries and $7.9 million in property damage yearly.
  • Tree Lights — only use indoor lights indoor and outdoor lights outdoors. Replace broken or cracked sockets or frayed and bare wires.
  • Use no more than three lights on any one extension cord and no cords under rugs or where people can trip.
  • Turn off all lights before bed and when leaving the house.

MERRY CHRISTMAS AND HAPPY NEW YEAR!

Remember to keep “CHRIST” in Christmas!!

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