Thursday, December 22, 2016

Christmas Tree Fire Safety Tips

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For many of our customers, choosing a live Christmas tree with their families is a cherished holiday tradition.

The experience of choosing a tree together, bringing it home, decorating it and enjoying the seasonal smell of fresh pine throughout the holidays is a staple for many people. However, bringing a live tree into your home may be putting you and your family at risk, so it’s essential that you take every precaution to prevent a Christmas tree fire.

Below are some tips to help prevent this common kind of residential fire, and help keep you and your loved ones safe this season:

1. Choose the Freshest-Looking Tree Possible

The fresher the tree looks, the less likely it is to lead to a fire. When selecting a tree, inspect it for needles which are as green as possible, and touch them to see if they feel brittle and break easily. If they do, then make sure to choose a different tree.

Another indicator that your tree may be too dry to bring home is whether or not the trunk appears to be dry. If you can still see sap on the trunk of the tree, then you can confidently bring it home with you.

2. Keep Your Tree Hydrated

Keeping your tree properly hydrated doesn’t just keep it looking lush and green for a longer period of time, it can also help prevent residential fires.

If you don’t already have one, now is the time to invest in a tree stand which allows your tree to stand in a reservoir of water. The size of your tree stand will depend on the height and width of your tree, so take the time to get the proper measurements and select a stand which won’t be easily toppled by pets or playing children.

3. Keep Your Tree Cool

You don’t need to worry about keeping your tree warm and cozy; in fact, the farther away from a heat source that you can set up your tree, the better. This means keeping your tree a few feet away from heat sources like radiators, baseboard heaters, fireplaces, TVs, and space heaters.

Additionally, be careful about the amount of lights that you wrap around your tree. Use low energy lights which have been approved for use with live trees, and never use lights which have damaged or frayed cables. Attach a maximum of three strings per extension cord, and make sure to keep the cords from being covered by any rugs or carpets.

4. Discard Your Dry Tree

Keeping your tree around after the holidays may feel like a nice way to retain some holiday cheer, but a dry and brittle tree can be a serious fire hazard.

When discarding your tree, never put your tree branches or any needles in your fireplace or wood burning stove, as they can spark and accidentally set fire to nearby items. Instead, arrange to have your tree picked up by a your municipal garbage service, or take it to a recycling centre.

Stay safe this holiday season with help from the fire safety experts at Bison Fire Protection. Contact us for assistance with fire protection in Winnipeg, Regina, Thompson, Brandon, and Kenora.

Posted by Rob Read at 10:04 AM

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