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Simple Tips For A Hazard-Free Holiday

November 23, 2015 – As you haul your favorite decorations out of storage, prepare to light the menorah or pick out the perfect Christmas tree, the Madison Fire Department asks you to keep in mind a few safety tips to rest assured the coming weeks will be merry and bright!
Christmas Trees

  • Select a tree with healthy green needles that don’t fall off when the branches are touched.
  • Cut two inches off the trunk before placing it in the stand to encourage water absorption.
  • Water your tree daily.
  • Place the tree away from exits and at least three feet from heat sources such as space heaters, candles, or fireplaces.
  • If choosing an artificial tree, be sure it’s labeled, certified, or identified by the manufacturer as fire-retardant.


  • Place candles at least 12 inches away from any flammable material.
  • Use sturdy candle holders that can’t be knocked over easily.
  • Place candles on uncluttered surfaces.
  • Blow out your candles before you leave a room or go to bed, and never leave a child or pet alone in a room with a burning candle.
  • Keep candles out of bedrooms and other sleeping areas.
  • Consider using flameless candles, which look and smell like real candles.

Holiday Lights

  • Choose lights that have the certification label of a recognized safety laboratory.
  • Know whether your lights are designed for indoor or outdoor use and place them accordingly.
  • Examine cords for frays, shorts, tears, or any potential source of electrical problems.
  • Turn off Christmas tree lights before leaving the home or going to bed.

Holiday memories last a lifetime. Ensure that yours are joyful this year by reducing the risk of fire in your home.

The Madison Fire Department wishes everyone a safe and festive season!