The winter holidays are a time for celebration, and that means more cooking, home decorating, entertaining, and an increased risk of fire due to heating equipment.
Holiday Decorating & Lighting
Use caution with holiday decorations and whenever possible, choose those made with flame-resistant, flame-retardant or non-combustible materials.
Keep candles away from decorations and other combustible materials, and do not use candles to decorate Christmas trees.
Purchase only lights and electrical decorations bearing the name of an independent testing lab, and follow the manufacturer's instructions for installation and maintenance.
Carefully inspect new and previously used light strings and replace damaged items before plugging lights in. Do not overload extension cords.
Always unplug lights before replacing light bulbs or fuses.
Don't mount lights in any way that can damage the cord's wire insulation (i.e., using clips, not nails).
Keep children and pets away from light strings and electrical decorations.
Turn off all light strings and decorations before leaving the house or going to bed.
Unattended cooking is the leading cause of home fires in the U.S. When cooking for holiday visitors, remember to keep an eye on the range.
Provide plenty of large, deep ashtrays and check them frequently. Cigarette butts can smolder in the trash and cause a fire, so completely douse cigarette butts with water before discarding, or flush them down the toilet.
After a party, always check on, between and under upholstery and cushions and inside trash cans for cigarette butts that may be smoldering.
Keep matches and lighters up high, out of sight and reach of children (preferably in a locked cabinet). When smokers visit your home, ask them to keep their smoking materials away from young children.