Ithaca, New York – Each year, fire departments respond to an average of 210 structure fires caused by Christmas trees. Combined with faulty holiday lights or open flames from candles, dry Christmas trees can quickly ignite and burn down a home.

Although Christmas tree fires are infrequent, when they do occur, they are very serious and life threatening. On average, one of every 31 reported home fires directly attributed to Christmas trees, results in a death.

Your local Ithaca Professional Fire Fighters recommend:

  • Keep Christmas trees away from heat sources and exits.
  • Watering your tree daily
  • Do not use holiday lighting that may have a damaged electrical cord.

“People are busy during the holiday season, and often forget to check for fire hazards,” says Lt. Tom Basher for the Ithaca Professional Fire Fighters Association (IPFFA) “Simple things like checking holiday lights for excessive wear and turning off Christmas tree lights before going to bed can make a huge difference.”

Fire fighters also recommend using non-flammable decorations and LED lights, while avoiding linking more than three strands of holiday lights.

The IPFFA wishes you a safe and Happy Holiday season.

Featured photo courtesy of Flickr. 

Jolene Almendarez

Jolene Almendarez is Managing Editor at The Ithaca Voice. She can be reached at jalmendarez@ithacavoice.com; you can learn more about her at the links in the top right of this box.