With the holiday weekend coming up, many may be shifting their attention to cooking, cleaning, and preparing for family gatherings. But, The Red Cross of Northern New England is urging people to stay attentive to the many holiday decorations that may be in their homes, as they could pose a fire threat.
Regional Disaster Officer John Montes offers some pointers on which types of decorations could be risky. He says to make sure live Christmas trees are well watered, as dry trees can easily catch fire. Don’t leave candles unattended, in a place where children or pets can reach them, or near anything flammable. Make sure any decorations with electrical cords are not broken or frayed.
“If you’re hanging stockings, don’t light the fireplace, hang them on the mantle. Stockings are frequently flammable, especially if you don’t have a gas or covered fireplace, it’s an easy place to have an accidental fire,” Montes adds.
He says to call 911 right away in the case of a fire, “and then have a plan to get out. The Red Cross encourages everyone to have a two minute plan where they can safely evacuate their home.”
Additionally, for outdoor decorations, make sure they’re meant for the outdoors, as weather damage could be detrimental. The Red Cross also offers a program to Northern New Englanders to install free smoke detectors if you are unable to install one yourself.