The Holidays: A Good Reminder of the Need for Fire Safety
More than likely, you’ve seen the reminders. Whenever clocks go ahead or behind, it’s time to check your batteries in your smoke alarm. Meanwhile, there should be a further caveat. Use the holidays as a good reminder for fire safety.
The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) provides some very interesting information on winter holiday fires. Unfortunately, Christmas trees are often the root of fires that occur during December and January. In fact, over a five year time period, an annual average of 200 homes became engulfed in flames due to problems associated with the Christmas tree.
In some cases, it was that a fresh-cut tree was too dry. Additionally, many traditional trees produce a lot of sap and are highly flammable. For example, pine trees are particularly susceptible to ignition. Unfortunately, this could mean a highly engaged fire that destroys property and possibly takes lives.
Holiday Fires Can Be Prevented
Without a doubt, there are some steps that you can take to guard against the possibility of a fire ruining your holiday celebration. First, there’s the obvious concerning your Christmas tree. It may look beautiful by your fireplace. However, unless your fireplace is merely decorative, consider locating the tree as far away as possible from any source of heat.
Next, take a look at the lights on the tree. Admittedly, the little flicker of lights has its appeal. However, are there frayed wires? For a few dollars, you can head out and replace some lights. It’s surely cheaper than the nightmare a fire could represent in your home.
Once again, take a look at the dryness of your tree. If the needles are beginning to fall off, there’s a considerable risk of a fire. If you like the smell of fresh-cut trees, consider waiting to cut a live tree down yourself as close to the holidays as possible. Make sure to provide your Christmas tree with water at the roots as often as possible.
All things considered, it’s not just Christmas trees that can cause fires during the holidays. You may decide to decorate your house and overload your electrical system. NFPA reports that approximately 840 fires are caused by holiday décor over a one year period. In many cases, it’s that the decorations were placed too close to a candle or other heat source.
Meanwhile, a great many fires during the holiday seasons actually start in the kitchen. It could be that some grease spills while preparing special meals. Additionally, appliances can malfunction. In fact, a number of incidents in the kitchen are electrical. Don’t forget to shut off the coffee pot and keep water away from electricity.
Have a Fire Safety Plan
First and foremost, you need to set up a fire safety plan. For starters, that means practicing fire prevention in your home. Meanwhile, make sure your house is equipped with the basics. Double check the batteries in your smoke alarm. At the very least, have a fire extinguisher available in your kitchen.
In a like manner, you also need to set up an escape plan and discuss it with your family. In fact, you might even want to institute routine fire drills to lessen panic in the event of a real fire. Make sure that all doors are free of encumbrances.
Do you live in one of Hudson County’s many high rises? You should be particularly concerned about an escape route. A New Jersey fire equipment company offers some suggestions if you live in an apartment building. For one, you should check to see if the building has sprinklers. Additionally, you should look for fire alarms and voice communication systems. Equally important, make sure you know where all exit doors are in the case you need to get out quickly.
Avoid the elevator! In case you were wondering why, there’s a chance that it could short circuit. Additionally, a fire could melt the floor buttons indicating where to stop. Meanwhile, the elevator can also fill up with smoke. The last thing you want is to be stuck in an elevator!
The Law Offices of Anthony Carbone recognizes the importance of providing safety tips to avoid all accidents. However, if you are injured as a result of a fire, we would like to assist you further. Contact our office to see how we can help!