Deck the halls with boughs of holly, fa-la-la-la-laaaa… Can you believe it’s almost Christmas? Yeah, neither can we! But something we can definitely put our focus on right now? Fire safety at Christmas.
While the Christmas tree, special holiday ornaments, and festive lights all feel like magic throughout the month of December (and sometimes November… you know who you are!) we have to do our part to avoid holiday residential home fires, something that tends to increase this time of year.
So what kinds of things should you watch out for? Don’t worry! We have it all laid out for you.
Ornaments, Lights, Candles… Oh My!
While Christmas decorations may appear innocent, they can actually be quite dangerous if not handled correctly. Always choose flame-resistant, non-combustible and non-conductive ornaments and refrain from putting up anything metallic on your tree for risk of shock if you have defective wire.
Candles should always be placed on stable surfaces away from the tree, curtains or anything else that could easily go up in flames. It may sound obvious, but blowing out the candle when leaving the room or going to bed is an absolute must.
Yes, it may seem nice to wake up to your lit up tree in the mornings but leaving your holiday lights on before bed could have you waking up to a serious flame. Anytime you leave the house or go to sleep at night, turn off the Christmas lights to avoid a fire hazard. Also, avoid overloading electrical outlets, always check for faulty wires and loose connections on your light strings, and use CSA approved light sets only. Oh, and one last thing; Indoor lights are for inside and outdoor lights are for outside. Got it? Good!
Oh Christmas Tree, Oh Christmas Tree…
Ahh, the tree! The most magical part about the holiday season, wouldn’t you agree? Let’s make sure we keep that gorgeous pine well taken care of and eliminate fire risks. You can do this by ensuring your real tree is well-watered. If there are needles all over the floor, this is a sign of dry & flammable pine and it needs to be watered. If there’s an artificial tree in the house, ensure it is fire resistant (hint: look for the CSA label). And finally, keep that lovely Christmas tree away from heat sources, one of the greatest risks of all!
Christmas Turkey Blues
Turkey should make everyone happy… not sad! But no one will be smiling over the holidays if a kitchen fire occurs! Cooking during the holidays can be stressful and it’s far easier to be negligent. Avoid holiday flames in the kitchen by avoiding loose clothing while cooking, using a timer to monitor your meals, and ensuring flammable items are kept away from the oven and stove elements.
The holidays are an excellent time of year to bring family and friends together. Don’t send the magic up in flames! By following these holiday tips along with your own common sense about what to do and what not to do at Christmas, you should be well on your way to a flame-free home this year!
Lloyd doesn’t break the rules for anyone and as a leading chief home inspector in BC, that means he follows industry requirements, government regulations and licensing codes of conduct to the letter. Unbiased, ethical and professional home inspection and building consultation services.