Christmas trees are involved in more than 300 fires annually, and result in dozens of injuries and deaths every Christmas. It's so busy over the holidays, sometimes it's easy to neglect what should really be at the top of our wish lists, our safety. So, one organization is sending out a special message: the holiday season should be happy not hazardous.
If a dry Christmas tree is sparked, it takes just seconds for an entire room to be consumed in flames. So while you're out browsing for that perfect pine, keep a few things in mind starting with safety.
"When you buy a tree, make sure it's fresh and green, that the needles are pliable and won't pull out easily from the tree," advised Hal Stratton, chairman of the Consumer Products Safety Commission.
He explains needles that don't bend are the sign of a dry tree. Another way to check for freshness: tap the trunk on the ground. If too many needles fall, you may need to keep looking. Also check out the bottom of the trunk. Be sure to cut about one inch off the bottom. This way, the water you put in the stand can be absorbed thoroughly.
And, don't forget about the every Christmas tree's companion: holiday lights. They can be a great addition to any home, but they can be unsafe and cause fires. Make sure your holiday lights have been tested by a lab such as UL to meet safety standards. And also check for frayed wires and cracked sockets. Following all these tips may seem tedious, but it's the best way to make sure your Christmas is a merry one.
For those of who have artificial trees, look for a label either on the tree or on the box that says fire resistant. Although this label does not mean the tree won't catch fire, it does mean it will resist fire and should extinguish quickly.
For more safety tips,