Christmas Trees Can Pose a Significant Fire Risk

Here are some ways to reduce your fire risk this season

It won’t be long before families get into the Christmas spirit. As families begin hauling trees into their homes and start placing wrapped presents under the tree, The Insurance Center would like to alert homeowners about the fire risk associated with Christmas trees and how to reduce those risks.

“Christmas trees are always a concern for firefighters because of the threat they pose to families,” said Robert J. Sammon, President of The Insurance Center. “Live demonstrations have shown that dry trees can go up in flames in a matter of seconds. Fortunately, families can take several steps to help prevent their tree from catching on fire.”

Statistics from the National Fire Protection Association suggest that while Christmas tree fires are not too common, when they do happen, they are more dangerous and cause more property damage when compared to other types of home fires.

To help families enjoy the upcoming holidays safely, The Insurance Center would like to share these essential fire prevention tips:

Water Your Tree Regularly

The National Institute for Standard and Technology produced a video that showed the stark difference between a dry tree and a watered tree. The watered tree was naturally more fire resilient, which reinforces the importance of watering your tree regularly.

Buy a Healthy Tree if Possible

Healthier trees are more likely to be well-watered, and thus less likely to catch on fire. Look for trees with intact needles and a wet trunk.

Don’t Overload Electrical Equipment

Overloaded electrical cords could heat up, melt insulation, and cause your tree to catch on fire. If possible, connect your lights to a wall outlet.

Turn Off the Tree Lights at Night

Homeowners can minimize their risk for a home fire by turning Christmas tree lights off when no one is home or when it is time to go to bed.

Keep Heat Sources Away

More than a quarter of Christmas tree fires were attributed to a nearby heating source. It is important to keep space heaters, candles, or other sources of heat at least three feet away from your tree.

Remove Your Tree As Soon as Christmas Passes

The longer a tree stays in your home, the likelier it is to dry up and become a fire hazard. You can help protect your family by removing the tree from your home as soon as the holidays have passed.

Christmas is a time to cherish the company of your friends and family. We would like for you to continue that tradition safely by heeding the tips mentioned above. Speak with an Insurance Center agent to learn other ways we can help protect your family.