Christmas Tree and Candle Safety

Image: JD Hancock (Creative Commons)

 Facts about home holiday fires

  • One of every three home Christmas tree fires is caused by electrical problems.
  • Although Christmas tree fires are not common, when they do occur, they are more likely to be serious. On average, one of every 31 reported home Christmas tree fires results in a death compared to an average of one death per 144 total reported home fires.
  • A heat source too close to the tree causes one in every four of Christmas tree fires.
  • December is the peak time of year for home candle fires.
  • One-third of all candle fires start in the bedroom.

Click here to read a useful infographic on holiday fire safety.

Video Clip: dry-tree versus high-moisture tree fire

Christmas trees account for hundreds of fires each year. Typically, shorts in electrical lights or open flames from candles, lighters or matches start tree fires. Well-watered trees are not a problem. A dry and neglected tree can be.

This dramatic clip demonstrates what happens when fire touches a dry tree and a properly maintained, well-watered tree.

source: fema.gov / U.S. Fire Administration