Local Fire Officials Urge Families Take Safe Precautions around Holidays

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As we all celebrate this holiday season, the Panama City Fire Department urges you to have fun but take precautions to keep your family safe. Things like Christmas trees and space heaters can be deadly if you aren’t careful.

“Especially with the debris piles around, people should be very careful,” Fire Division Chief Kent Taylor said.

Be cautious of the trees outside and even the one you bring inside. “If all the leaves fall off and it’s dry ridden, go to the next one,” he said. 

“You can see when it’s dry rotted and you bend these and they don’t flex back, they just break off. You shouldn’t bring a tree like this home with you,” he said while holding a nearly dead tree. The National Fire Protection Association said two out of every five Christmas tree fires account for at least 75 percent of holiday fire fatalities.

You can avoid fires by watering your tree every day and don’t give it any reason to dry out.

Keep all heat sources like vents, fireplaces, candles, and space heaters away from other things in the room. Space heaters are responsible for tens of thousands of fires and hundreds of deaths each year.

“If you have a space heater, keep everything at least four feet away from it, turn everything off while you’re not in the room, and especially in the house,” Taylor said.

    
    

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