Safety tips for a jolly holiday season

The holidays and fireplace safety

Ah, Thanksgiving. It’s when we gather with loved ones and take stock of life’s many blessings – and eat lots of turkey. Once the feast is devoured, the family has left, and the effects of tryptophan have subsided, thoughts turn to garland, Christmas trees, hanging lights, and decking the halls for the holidays.

If you’re lucky enough to have a fireplace, you know it’s the ultimate focal point during the holidays. We’ve all heard the saying, “Don’t play with fire,” more than once in our lives, and it’s actually quite good advice when decorating around a fireplace.

Christmas Tree Safety
According to the U.S. Fire Administration, indoor tree fires aren’t common, but when they do occur, they’re likely to be serious. That’s why these safety tips are important:

  • Fireplaces and Christmas trees belong together – but not too close! When choosing a spot for your tree, keep it a safe distance from your fireplace.
  • If you buy an artificial tree, make sure it has a “Fire Resistant” label. All trees will burn if exposed to flames, but trees manufactured in this manner will resist fire and extinguish faster.
  • Home heat makes live Christmas trees dry out fast and can turn them into fire hazards. Keep the water reservoir full so your tree remains as hydrated as possible.

Hang the Stockings with Care
Fireplace mantels are the perfect focal point for displaying your most cherished holiday treasures. Just remember that many holiday decorations are made of flammable materials, so keep them a safe distance away from the heat and flames. Gas fireplace safety is every bit as important as wood fireplace safety, so think twice before hanging or placing anything flammable near your fireplace, no matter what fuel it burns.

While decorating around your fireplace, remember these safety tips and your family and guests will stay safe and warm during the holidays. This is also a great time of year to spend some a bit of time preparing for the season with annual fireplace maintenance.

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