Tucson Fire warns of hidden holiday fire hazards

Updated: Dec. 8, 2016 at 7:24 AM MST
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TUCSON, AZ (Tucson News Now) - The holidays are almost here and many Tucson residents have already started decorating their homes.

But before putting up that Christmas tree, Tucson Fire crews are warning the public about a few holiday hazards that could cost them money, or even their life.

According to the U.S. Fire Administration, although Christmas tree fires aren't too common, they can be disastrous.

On average, one in every 31 reported home Christmas tree fires results in death, compared to one in 144 reported home fires.

Many Christmas tree fires are caused by a heat source being too close to the tree.

To prevent a Christmas tree fire, Tucson Fire crews recommend checking trees for dryness often, and watering the tree daily.

It's also crucial to keep it away from things like heaters, vents, fireplaces or electrical cords.

Keeping trees away from electrical cords can be tough, as most people string lights on their trees.

According to the National Fire Protection Association, electrical distribution or lighting equipment is involved in 35 percent of home Christmas tree fires.

When it comes to lights, it's important to read the instructions to see how many cords can be strung together.

Always check for damage before hanging them up.

December is also the peak time of year for candle fires.

Tucson Fire crews say it's best to use non-flame alternatives.

If they do choose to use a flame, keep combustible items far away.

Lastly, heating a home can be dangerous as well if proper care is not taken.

Space heaters should be kept a safe 3 feet away from anything that can burn, and should be turned off when not in use.

Ovens should never be used for heating purposes.

For more information on preventing Christmas tree fires, click HERE.

For more information on general holiday safety tips, click HERE.

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