Christmas trees are a beautiful holiday tradition, but without the right precautions, they can be a fire hazard. But with the proper care, a real tree can be safer than an artificial one. Keep your family safe by following these simple tips.
Select a fresh, green tree, and place it away from fireplaces, heating vents, and space heaters. Use only indoor lights, and check them for broken or cracked sockets, frayed or bare wires, and loose connections. Replace or repair any damaged light sets.
Don't use more than three light sets per extension cord, and never use candles on a tree. Turn off all tree lights and decorations when you go to bed or leave the house.
The most important thing you can do to keep your tree safe is to prevent it from drying out. Keep the tree stand filled with water at all times. As fire safety engineers say, "A wet tree is a safe tree!"
Also on Gardening in a Minute
- Christmas Tree Selection and Care
- Disposing of Your Christmas Trees
- LED Christmas Lights
- Living Christmas Trees
- Outdoor Christmas Lights
- Holiday and Christmas Tree Safety--US Fire Administration
- Christmas Tree Fires--National Fire Protection Association
- Christmas Tree Tips--National Safety Council (PDF)
- Christmas Trees and Safety--American Christmas Tree Association
- Holiday Safety Tips for Pets--ASPCA
- Safety Tips for Enjoying Your Christmas Tree--Clemson (SC) Cooperative Extension
- For Safety Sake, Keep Christmas Trees Watered--Georgia College of Environmental and Agricultural Sciences