We think of the holidays as happy times, a chance to celebrate with family and friends. The Santa Barbara County Fire Department wants to wish you and your family a safe and happy holiday season, and offers the following suggestions to keep your holiday safe:
- Don’t place your Christmas tree close to a heat source, including the fireplace or heater vent. The heat will dry out the tree and it could catch fire by heat, flame, or sparks more easily
- Never put Christmas tree branches or needles in a fireplace or wood burning stove.
- When the tree becomes dry, remove it from your home right away. The best way to get rid of your tree is to take it to a recycling center or have it collected by a community pick-up service.
- Check the Christmas lights each year for wires that are worn out or coming apart, have bare spots or gaps in the insulation, broken or cracked sockets, and a lot of bends or twists in the wire.
- Only use laboratory-tested lighting and extension cords (approved cord will have an official tag attached).
- Never overload outlets or extension cords.
- Don’t leave Christmas tree lights lit unless someone is in the room.
- If you use candles, make sure they are in stable holders and put them where they cannot be easily knocked over and start a fire.
- Never leave candles burning unattended.
The Santa Barbara County Fire Department wants you to remember that fires don’t take a holiday. By taking some precautions, you and your family can celebrate a fire-safe holiday.