Holidays are meant for relaxing and spending time with our loved ones. Even while relaxing with family or friends, it is very important to keep in mind that you need to be extra careful as bad installations, highly combustible materials, and holiday cooking issues might occur.
During the holidays you tend to have additional things plugged in around the house, cook at higher temps than normal, or leave candles going to give off a warm cozy feeling to your guests. You might not do anything too out of the ordinary for holidays but it’s important to still keep these things in mind as they can be extremely dangerous.
To help you understand these concerns better, we will first show some blazing statistics about holiday house fires and the most common causes. In the end, we will walk you through our guide on how to take the necessary precautions.
We want you to enjoy the holiday season in all its glory, without any dangers lurking through your home. So here are our holiday safety tips!
Holiday fires statistics
1. How many fires are caused by Christmas decorations?
From 2014 to 2018 – the U.S. fire department responded to around 770 structure fires caused by holiday decorations. Property damage was $11 million and it led to two deaths and around 30 injured. Holiday fires peak in December as 21% percent of fires happen then.
2.Where did the fire start?
According to NFPA – from January to November most of the fires start in the kitchen (about 20%), then in the living room (16%), and then in the dining room (4%). During December things get a bit different. The largest percent of fires start in the living room (23%), after that in the kitchen (12%), and 11% in the dining room. It is scary to say but 8% of fires are set intentionally.
3. What is the most common cause?
The most common cause of home structure fires (about 44%) happens because the decoration was too close to the source of heat. Cooking equipment caused 20% of home decoration fires.
4. How many candle fires occur?
Home candle fires peak in December. During 2014-2018 there were 21 cases of fire caused by a candle. Candle fires peak mostly on Christmas Day. 60% of candle fires happen because the candle was too close to furniture, curtains, or other combustible materials.
5. Fires caused by fireworks
10% of fires are caused by fireworks, and they mostly occur between New Year’s Eve and the third of January
Which steps can I take to ensure a safe holiday season?
Follow our holiday safety tips. We gathered everything you need to know and how to protect your family and your belongings.
- Before decorating, we highly suggest checking all the installations to locate potential problems. Check if there are any damaged sockets, loose wires or connections, or even bare wires. If you locate the problem, resolve it on short notice and then you can start spreading the Christmas joy.
- Use battery-operated Christmas lights. They will not cause any fires and they are safe for your pets. If they chew on electric wires, it can be extremely dangerous for your fur babies.
- Place your Christmas tree far away from heat sources like candles, firepits, or cooking equipment. Water your Christmas tree every day to keep it fresh because when it gets dry, it becomes a very serious safety hazard. To add an additional layer of safety, we recommend using Burn Barrier X. It is good for protecting combustible materials like matting, rattan, cardboard, corrugated paper, sisal, barker cloth, dry grass, and more.
- Try not to cause electrical overload during the holiday season. We know that you want to add more lights to interiors and exteriors as well but be aware of your limits. Your electric bill will thank you as well. Also, if you have a lot of cables in one place, remember to use Burn Barrier Mastic No. 77 to protect your cables.
- Never connect more than three string lights or they can get overloaded resulting in cracking which causes the fire.
- Try using battery-operated candles or opt for closed candleholders. Avoid an open flame. We recommend using a Burn barrier CP to protect your upholstery, drapes, rugs, and other combustible materials.
- Organize cords better. Avoid putting them under the rugs, avoid pinching them with the furniture, or attaching them with the staples.
- While you are cooking for the holidays, don’t leave the kitchen. Avoid leaving cooking equipment unattended at all times.
- Turn off all of the decorations when you are going to sleep. Statistics have shown that most of the fire deaths happened overnight. To ensure your good night’s sleep, we recommend turning off the equipment between 11 pm and 7 am.
We wish you a happy and safe holiday season so we hope that you will find our holiday safety tips helpful. Don’t be part of the statistics we mentioned. All the tips we provided don’t require much time to do but they can save lives.