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Preventing Holiday Fires

December 6, 2011, 6:50 AM by Kellee Azar

Preventing Holiday Fires
SIOUX FALLS, SD - This is a big time of the year for decorating, parties, and even cuddling up by the fire. But all of these things can contribute to holiday fires.

Each year 2,500 people die in home fires.

During the holidays, many people forget to take basic steps to keep their homes safe, especially when it comes to the Christmas tree.

"Practice a little prevention make sure your tree stays watered, give it plenty of water every single day. As long as the tree needles themselves aren't readily falling off, the tree is still in good shape. But make sure you're watering every day," Sioux Falls Fire Marshal Dean Lanier said.

The biggest cause for tree fires is letting the tree get too dry and placing it too close to a heat source.

"If you have a fire place or a wood burning stove or whatever the case may be, make sure you keep three feet of distance away from that tree," Lanier said.

When it comes to fires, lighting is not generally the issue.

"Actually, no the lights themselves, as long as they are rated for decorations, they are not really an issue.  The issue is the condition of the tree, how much water has the tree had the past couple days," Lanier said.

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