The holiday season brings joy and excitement to families, but it can also bring tragedy. Careless handling of Christmas trees, candles and lights can cause fires. A dried out tree can catch fire and burn a living room in just 30 seconds.
Here are some helpful tips to keep your home safe during the holidays:
• When buying a live tree, look for one that is not shedding needles. If branches snap when bent, it is a sign that the tree is already too dry.
• Cut one inch off the bottom of your tree so it will draw water better. Keep your tree in a water-holding stand and full of water. In the first three days, a tree will need approximately three gallons of water.
• Do not place the tree near any heat source.
• Buy artificial trees with safety approved labels (UL or FM).
• Never use electrical decorations on an aluminum tree.
• Never use candles on a tree.
• Do not overload circuits or extension cords.
• Be careful not to use tree lights with cracked or broken wiring. Use only laboratory approved lights.
• Do not place lights or candles near anything that can easily catch on fire like curtains, furniture or bedding.
• Turn tree lights off before going to bed or leaving house.
• Put candles in non-flammable, sturdy holders or candlesticks. Do not place them where they can easily be knocked over like in windows or near exits.
• Use only lighters designed to be child resistant and keep all matches and lighters out of the children's reach.
• Take the tree down as soon as the holidays are over.
If you have an emergency call 9-1-1. For non-emergencies, call the Tempe Fire Department at 480-858-7200.