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Proper Care Of Your Christmas Tree

Even Christmas tree's can be a fire hazard. Here's some tips to keep your holiday season safe and fire free.

  • Store tree in cool, sheltered place until ready to set up
  • Cut about one inch (three centimeters) off the butt end to open the tree stem and allow water intake
  • Place tree in a stand that will hold 2 to 3 litres of water and top it up daily. If water drops below the end of the trunk, the stem may reseal instself, requiring a fresh cut.
  • Keep tree away from all sources of heat including radiators, furnace ducts, television sets, fireplaces and windows with direct exposure to the sun.
  • Remove the tree within 10-14 days. After that amount of time in a heated building even the freshest tree will begin to dry out.
  • Pick a tree with a strong green colour and noticeable fragrance.
  • Ensure all electric lights and connections are in good working order.
  • Turn off lights when leaving your home and retiring for the night.
  • Never use lighted candles on or near a Christmas tree.
  • The best protection for a tree is moisture. Because of its' high moisture content, a fresh tree is naturally fire retardant and will remain so with a continuous supply of water.
  • Install smoke alarms on every level of the home.
  • Make sure your smoke alarms work.
  • Review your "home fire escape plan" with everyone.

Source: Office of the Fire Marshall (Ontario).