Holiday Safety Tips From Dix Hills FD
The winter holidays are a happy time for all of us, but unfortunately it can turn tragic by a house fire. The Commissioners of the Dix Hills Fire District and the officers and members of the Dix Hills Volunteer Fire Department wish our neighbors a safe and happy holiday season and urge everyone to follow these important safety tips:
- § If using a live tree, choose those with green needles that are hard to pull back from the branches. Needles should not break from freshly cut trees.
- § Bounce the tree on the ground; if lots of needles fall off, the tree has probably dried out and is a fire hazard.
- § Do not place your tree close to a heat source, including fireplaces or heat vents.
- § Do not put your tree up too early or leave it up longer than two weeks.
- § Keep the tree stand filled with water at all times.
- § Unplug lights from the tree before going to bed or leaving the house.
- § Dispose of your tree properly; do not burn it in the fireplace or a wood-burning stove.
Holiday Lights and Decorations
- § Inspect holiday lights every year for frayed wires, bare spots, gaps in the insulation, and broken or cracked sockets before putting them up.
- § Use only lighting listed by an approved testing laboratory, such as UL or FM.
- § Do not link more than three light strands, unless the directions indicate it is safe.
- § Periodically check the wires ― they should never be warm to the touch.
- § Do not leave holiday lights on unattended.
- § Use only nonflammable decorations and keep all decorations away from fireplaces and heat vents.
- § Never put wrapping paper in a fireplace; it can result in a very large fire and throw off dangerous sparks and embers that can cause a chimney fire.
Use Candles with Care
- § If you do use candles, make sure they are in stable holders and place them where they cannot be knocked over.
- § Never leave the house with candles burning.
- § Never put a lit candle on a Christmas tree ― real or artificial.
- § Keep burning candles out of the reach of children and pets.
- § Always extinguish candles before going to bed or leaving the house.
Now and throughout the year make sure that you have working smoke and carbon monoxide alarms installed on every level of your home; they are required by law and are the best defense in escaping serious injury or death. Test all smoke and carbon monoxide detectors monthly and keep them clean and equipped with fresh batteries at all times. Detectors save lives!