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3 Holiday Fire Dangers and Tips

3 Holiday Fire Dangers and Tips

It is rapidly approaching one of the most dangerous times of the year for home related fires. Consider these statistics and safety recommendations:

1. Thanksgiving Cooking

  • Nearly four times as many home cooking fires occurr on Thanksgiving Day as on a typical day
  • In 2014, U.S. fire departments responded to an estimated 1,730 home cooking fires on Thanksgiving with ovens and cooking ranges as the leading type of equipment involved and unattended cooking as the leading contributing factor

TIPS:
a. The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) discourages the use of outdoor gas-fueled turkey fryers
b. Never leave the kitchen when you have food on the stove and never leave home with food in the oven

2. Christmas trees

  • US fire departments responded to an estimated 210 home structure fires per year between 2010—2014 that began with ignition of Christmas trees
  • Some type of electrical distribution or lighting equipment was involved in 35% of home Christmas tree fires
  • Christmas tree fires caused an annual average $16.2 million in direct property damage

TIPS:
a. Make sure the tree is at least three feet away from any heat source such as radiators, heat vents, fireplaces, and candles
b. Follow manufacturer instructions for the number of light strands to connect and always replace worn or broken cords
c. Never leave trees lit while unattended, including when you go to bed

3. Candles

  • According to NFPA, candles were the heat source in 38% of the fires between 2009—2013
  • Approximately 36% of candle fires began in bedrooms
  • The top four days for home candle fires were New Year’s Day, Christmas, New Year’s Eve, and Christmas Eve
  • Candle fires resulted in $374 million of direct property damage

TIPS:
a. Trim wicks to 1/4 inch before burning
b. Discontinue burning a candle when 2 inches of wax remains or ½ inch, if in a container
c. Extinguish candles if they repeatedly flicker or smoke, or the flames goes to high

Information gathered from: NFPA and National Candle Association

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