Common Holiday Fire Hazards

How Home and Business Owners Can Prevent Them

The holiday season is just around the corner. This time of year brings around festive holiday decorations inside and outside, celebrations with family and friends that include a lot of cooking and baking, traveling, shopping, and more. While these are definitely exciting times, they can also become very dangerous. It’s easy to slack on fire safety when you are busy getting ready for the upcoming holidays. In fact, most home fires occur during the winter months, according to the National Fire Protection Association, and are generally caused by cooking, heating, and electrical malfunctions. However, it’s easy to stay safe and prevent fires during the holiday as long as you are proactive.

No matter what holiday you are celebrating, consider these important tips for staying safe and preventing fires.

Cooking- This is the time families do a lot of cooking. The kitchen is generally a busy place and distracted cooking is the leading cause of cooking fires. It’s important to keep the kitchen area as uncluttered as possible, keep kids out of the kitchen, keep flammables away from heat sources, roll up long sleeves, pull back long hair, and do not use extension cords for cooking appliances.

Christmas Trees- Real and artificial trees pose a variety of fire risks. Real trees can dry out easily, but this can be prevented by watering them daily. When lights are placed on them it could cause heat and catch fire quickly. Artificial trees can also catch fire if they are too close to a heat source. It is important when stringing lights together that you only use 3 strings or less. Using a power strip is also a great way to avoid overpowering.

Candles/Decor- This is the time to light cozy candles and put out festive decor. It is important not to place these items too close to a heat source. Be sure not to overload circuits with too many wires and do not leave lights unattended. Candles can be disastrous especially if you have kids or pets. Instead of using candles, consider using battery-operated flameless candles. For menorahs and kinaras, place them where they cannot be knocked down easily, preferably on a non-flammable surface.

Fireplace- Depending on where you live, this may be a cold time of year. If your home has a fireplace, it’s important to take the necessary precautions before you light it including making sure the fireplace is up to date on a cleaning, making sure the damper or flue is open, cleaning out ashes from previous use, and removing anything from the area that could be flammable. It is also wise to keep a fire extinguisher nearby just in case.

Shopping- If you own a shopping center, storefront, or another retail venue, it’s important to make sure that exits are not blocked. During this time, the store may be crowded with extra customers and products. Making sure these exits are clear will help prevent accidents. Fires that happen in busy shopping areas may not always be able to be controlled/prevented, but we can stay aware of identifying emergency exits.

Contact Us For Reliable Fire Sprinklers

At Columbia Fire, serving the Seattle, WA area, we offer reliable fire sprinklers and repairs. We put our customers first and make sure to offer the best products in the industry. Sprinklers are the most effective form of fire protection. However, for these fire sprinkler systems to be so reliable, they must be inspected, tested, and maintained in accordance with the National Fire Protection Association. Our services are carried out in accordance with the code requirements set forth by NFPA and the local authority. If you are looking for information on fire protection services or fire sprinklers systems, please contact Columbia Fire today!