By Fire Chief Sam DiGiovanna
There is a wildfire threat that will be in most everyone’s home – Christmas Tree Fires!
Christmas Trees are being sold earlier than normal. This is good news as many people are in a “Covid – Funk” and want to bring some needed joy into their homes.
The flip side to this is trees will become drier increasing the fire danger as we near Christmas. Add in the Santa Ana winds in the forecast and trees are becoming even more zapped of needed moisture increasing the danger.
When buying your tree follow these safety tips:
Choose fresh over cheap and dry. The fresher the tree, the less likely it will pose a fire hazard. Look for flexible needles that don’t break, and a trunk with sap
Keep the water coming. The tree stand should contain a continuous source of water and be sturdy enough to resist toppling by kids or pets.
Trees don’t need warmth. Keep the tree away from heat sources such as fireplaces, candles and even a TV.
Not any lights will do. Use low energy, safe lighting that’s been certified by a safety testing lab. Don’t use damaged or frayed cords.
Turn off the lights. Never leave the lights on overnight. Same goes for any appliances not in use when you are home or away.
Do not block exits or doorways. Keep trees clear of access/egress points.
Don’t keep a dry tree around. Dispose of it at this point properly. Don’t even keep it in the garage.
Keep a fire extinguisher nearby. Make sure everyone knows its location and how to use it. Make sure your smoke detectors are working as well.