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TVF&R

Posted on: December 1, 2017

Keep the Holidays Merry

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We want you to enjoy a happy holiday season and avoid a devastating fire by using caution with your decorations and preparations for holiday gatherings. To help you along the way, we have a few safety tips.

A dry holiday tree is extremely flammable, so it’s important to keep your tree healthy and green. We suggest making a fresh cut at the base of the tree before placing it in your stand.

Place your tree in a special spot away from any heat sources and immediately add water. It’s best to check the water level every day and ensure it never drops below the base of your tree. When the needles begin to fall, it’s time to remove your tree.

When it comes to brightening your home with holiday lights, use only UL-approved, low-heat lights and follow manufacturer instructions. That means using outdoor lights outside and indoor lights in your home.

Never use light sets with broken sockets, frayed and/or cracked wires, or missing sockets. Any of these hazards may cause an electrical shock or fire.

Fasten outdoor lights securely to exterior walls, trees, or other firm supports to protect them from wind damage. Do not use nails or tacks to hold light strings in place. Instead, we recommend using plastic light string holders or run your lights through hooks.

Don’t overload extension cords or wall sockets with all of your festive lighting.

Remember to turn off all lights when you go to bed or leave the house, as they can short out and start a fire.

If you enjoy candles, consider using battery-operated flameless candles, which can look, smell and feel like real candles.

If you choose to use traditional candles, place them where they cannot tip over in a sturdy metal, glass or ceramic holder. Never leave a lit candle unattended, and blow candles out after use and before going to bed.

For those holiday gatherings you plan to host, make safety a priority while cooking a feast for your guests.

You can avoid a kitchen fire by following these cooking tips:
  • Stay in the kitchen and keep an eye on what you are cooking.
  • Wear short or tight-fitting sleeves.
  • Keep towels, pot holders, curtains and paper products away from the stove.
  • Heat cooking oil slowly, and turn down the heat if it begins to smoke.
  • Keep your cooking area clean, including the exhaust fan, oven and stovetop.
  • Keep a large lid close at hand in case of a pan fire.
  • Unplug small appliances when they are not in use.

Tualatin Valley Fire & Rescue wishes you and your family a safe and happy holiday season.
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