The Plainfield Fire Protection District is participating in the annual holiday fire safety campaign known as “Keep the Wreath Red” to raise awareness of fire safety during the holiday season, according to a news release.
All fire stations are decorated with a holiday wreath with red lights. If holiday decorations cause a fire, then a red light will be replaced with a white light. The district hopes to keep the wreaths red this holiday season with residents’ help.
Candle fires are the most common cause of holiday decoration fires, and, overall, December is the peak month of the year for residential candle fires, the release said. The fire protection district advises residents to keep candles at least 12 inches away from anything flammable.
Also use sturdy candle holders that won’t tip over. Always blow out candles before leaving a room or going to bed. Never leave a child or pet alone in a room with a burning candle. Never use a candle if oxygen is used in your home. Consider decorating with flame-less candles that can look and smell like real candles.
When decorating using holiday lights and other electric-powered devices, make sure a qualified testing laboratory has listed them as safe. Inspect light strings before using them, and replace any string of lights with worn or broken cords or loose bulb connections.
Read the manufacturer’s instructions for the maximum number of light strings to connect. When decorating outside, make sure you are using outdoor electrical decorations and cords. Use clips, not nails, to hang lights so cords don’t get damaged. Always turn off decorations before leaving your home or going to bed.
When buying a fresh cut Christmas tree, check to make sure the needles do not fall off when touched. Cut 2 inches from the base of the trunk before placing the tree in the stand. Place your Christmas tree so it is at least 3 feet away from heat sources and is not blocking an exit. Make sure to add water to the stand daily to keep the tree fresh.
Remove the Christmas tree from your home as soon as it begins to show signs of drying out because a dry tree is a fire hazard. Take the dry tree outside and away from your home, garage or other structure while waiting for disposal. Anyone with questions about fire safety can call the Plainfield Fire Protection District at 815-436-5335, ext. 7314 or visit PlainfieldFPD.com.