Holiday Safety: Tip No. 1

Learn some safety tips for the holiday season.

In the coming days, EHS Today will offer safety tips for the holiday season. From now until Dec. 25, look for suggestions on home, driving and winter weather safety. Remember to make this season not only enjoyable, but safe as well.

As the holiday season begins, many people adorn their homes with one of the most prominent holiday decorations -- the Christmas tree.

The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) reported that between 1993 to 1997, Christmas trees were the items first ignited in approximately 440 home fires, resulting in 14 deaths. Tree fires were also the result of 79 injuries and $18.5 million in damages on average annually.

While this seasonal symbol is an enjoyable part of holiday festivities, it is important to keep your tree safe. The Ohio Insurance Institute suggests the following.

  • Check the tree for freshness by pulling on its needles.
  • Water it daily and make sure the tree stand is a sturdy one. A desiccated tree presents a fire hazard.
  • Use only indoor lights on the tree and keep it away from heat sources and exits.
  • Discard the tree when needles start to fall.
  • Check labels on artificial trees to make sure they are flame-retardant.
  • Turn off the tree lights when you leave the house.
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