Structure fires can strike anytime of the year. The winter months, however, are the peak time for home fires. If tragedy does strike, remember that Menold Construction and Restoration is your Bloomington-Normal, IL, fire damage restoration specialist. Don’t let your holidays be ruined by a fire. Follow these fire safety tips from the Illinois Office of the State Fire Marshal.
- Choose the right tree. If you buy an artificial tree, make sure it is labeled as being fire resistant. If you buy a fresh tree, check the needles. If they fall off when touched, choose a different tree that isn’t so brittle and dry.
- Be careful where you place the tree. Fresh trees should be installed in a sturdy water stand and be watered daily. Make sure your tree is not blocking an exit. And keep it at least three feet from heating sources, such as fireplaces, space heaters, and candles.
- Throw away your tree after Christmas. Dried-out trees are fire hazards and should not be left in your home or garage.
- Turn off Christmas tree lights when you leave the room.
- Use only indoor lights indoors; and outdoor lights outdoors only.
- Replace strings of lights that are worn out or have broken bulbs.
- Do not overload extension cords or outlets with too many strings of lights.
- Be careful where you place candles. The majority of fires caused by candles happen when they are put too close to combustible household items and holiday decorations. Also, put the candles on uncluttered surfaces, where children can’t reach them and where they are less likely to be knocked over.
- Use sturdy candleholders.
- Extinguish candles when you leave the room.
Over a recent five-year period, two out of every five fires reported in December and January were linked to holiday decorations. These tips may help you and your family to prevent a home fire this holiday season.