San Diego Fire-Rescue demonstrates holiday fire safety

SAN DIEGO (KUSI) – Firefighters held a holiday fire safety demonstration Wednesday, by using a Christmas tree to burn down a makeshift home.

The San Diego Fire-Rescue Department and the Burn Institute held the demonstration at the San Diego Fire and Rescue training facility in order to raise awareness of the simple steps you can take to protect yourself and family this holiday season.

Home fires increase during the winter months due to people heating their houses, hanging holiday decorations and the use of candles., according to the National Fire Protection Association.

The Burn Institute, which helped with the demonstration, also offers resources to mitigate fire danger like offering free smoke alarms to seniors around the county. Tips listed on their website include:

  • If you have an artificial tree, be sure it’s labeled, certified or identified by the manufacturer as fire-retardant. If you choose a fresh tree, make sure the green needles don’t fall off when touched; before placing it in the stand, cut 1-2” from the base of the trunk. Add water to the tree stand, and be sure to water it daily.
  • Make sure your tree is not blocking an exit, and is at least three feet away from any heat source, like fireplaces, space heaters, radiators, candles and heat vents or lights.
  • Use lights that have the label of a recognized testing laboratory, and make sure you know whether they are designed for indoor or outdoor use. Replace any string of lights with worn or broken cords, or loose bulb connections. Connect no more than three strands of mini-string sets and a maximum of 50 bulbs for screw-in bulbs.
  • Never use lit candles to decorate the tree.
  • Always turn off Christmas tree lights before leaving the home or going to bed.
  • After Christmas, get rid of the tree. Dried-out trees are a fire hazard and should not be left in the home or garage, or placed outside the home.
Categories: Local San Diego News