The Tallahassee Fire Department (TFD) urges residents to remain diligent in their fire safety practices during the holiday season.
Decorations including candles, lights and Christmas trees are festive, but without safety precautions, they can become fire hazards.
To highlight the importance of holiday fire safety, TFD hosted the annual Christmas Tree fire safety demonstration this week in partnership with State Fire Marshal Jimmy Patronis. This effort emphasized how simple, proactive steps can help keep your family safe this season.
- Regularly check your tree for fresh, green needles. Trees that have dried out over several weeks burn faster than fresher, well-watered trees. Remember to keep your tree watered daily.
- Keep your tree at least three feet from fireplaces, radiators, space heaters, heating vents and other sources of heat.
- Don’t place the tree where it blocks an exit.
- Check light strings for damage before decorating and turn off your holiday lights before leaving home or going to bed.
- When purchasing an artificial tree, look for the label "Fire Resistant." Although this label does not mean the tree cannot catch fire, it does indicate the tree will resist burning and should extinguish quickly.
- Place candles and candleholders on a non-flammable surface to catch the melting candle wax. Never leave lit candles unattended.
- Use a fire screen to keep embers and logs from escaping when using a fireplace. Make sure all embers are fully extinguished before turning in for the night.
- Test all smoke alarms and replace batteries, if needed.