Christmas Tree Safety

posted Dec 2, 2014, 6:38 AM by Lebanon NH   [ updated Aug 15, 2016, 6:58 AM ]
Christmas Tree Safety
Each year, fire departments respond to an average of 210 structure fires caused by Christmas trees. Carefully decorating Christmas trees can help make your holidays safer. Please review the following safety tips and download the NFPA safety tips flyer on Christmas tree safety.  


Picking the tree
  • If you have an artificial tree, be sure it is labeled, certified, or identified by the manufacturer as fire retardant.
  • Choose a tree with fresh, green needles that do not fall off when touched.
Placing the tree
  • Before placing the tree in the stand, cut 1" - 2" from the base of the trunk.
  • Make sure the tree is at least three feet away from any heat source, like fireplaces, radiators, candles, heat vents or lights.
  • Make sure the tree is not blocking an exit.
  • Add water to the tree stand. Be sure to add water daily.
Lighting the tree
  • Use lights that have the label of an independent testing laboratory. Some lights are only for indoor or outdoor use, but not both.
  • 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. Read manufacturer’s instructions for number of LED strands to connect.
  • Never use lit candles to decorate the tree.
  • Always turn off Christmas tree lights before leaving home or going to bed.
Video: This NFPA/UL video demonstrates the flammability of a dry Christmas tree vs. a tree that has been watered regularly.