While celebrating the holiday season with festive lights, decorations and greenery, it is important to take extra care to prevent fires. To ensure the safety of Florida’s citizens, homes and natural resources, the Florida Forest Service provides the following tips to reduce fire hazards in and around the home:
- Keep natural and artificial indoor trees away from fireplaces, portable heaters and other heat sources.
- Use only non-combustible or flame-resistant decorations.
- Check the labels on lights to make sure they were tested at a facility, such as UL or ETL, and follow manufacturers’ instructions for use.
- Discard any lights with cracked sockets, frayed or bare wires, or loose connections.
- Always turn off holiday lights and extinguish candles when going to sleep or leaving the house.
The Florida Forest Service also encourages residents to clear dry debris from roofs and yards to eliminate the link that could carry a wildfire from the woods to homes. Residents should check with local county or city officials for information regarding yard waste and Christmas tree disposal or recycling.
The Florida Forest Service, a division of the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, manages more than 1 million acres of state forests and provides forest management assistance on more than 17 million acres of private and community forests. The Florida Forest Service is also responsible for protecting homes, forestland and natural resources from the devastating effects of wildfire on more than 26 million acres.
For more information about the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, visit FreshFromFlorida.com