The National Fire Prevention Association reports that last December, 600 Christmas tree fires killed 33 people and caused more than 112 injuries. To help keep your family safe from Christmas tree fires this holiday season, University of Nevada Cooperative Extension reminds you to:
Use only "UL approved" products on your Christmas tree;
- Do not connect more than 3 strands of lights end-to-end;
- Discard any strings of lights with worn, cracked, or broken cords or sockets;
- Use only lights that are labeled for indoor use on your Christmas tree;
- Use the smaller, newer type lights that remain cooler than the larger, old-fashioned lights;
- Always unplug lights when you leave your home or go to bed;
- Water your cut tree at least daily, making sure you unplug the lights prior to watering;
- Do not place your tree near a heat vent that will dry it out quicker, posing more of a fire hazard;
- Keep your tree away from south-facing windows that will also dry your tree out more rapidly;
- Never burn your tree branches, which are highly combustible, in your fireplace.
When the holidays are over, recycle your tree. For information, call UNR Extension at 784-4848.