Keep decorations fire free this Christmas

By: Whitney Burks Email
By: Whitney Burks Email

PIKEVILLE, Ky. (WYMT) - The Christmas decorating season is here, but officials say many people do not focus enough on fire safety while decorating causing many holiday accidents to happen.

It is that time of year. Everywhere you look: garland, lights and ribbon.

Joey Osborne says it is something he does every year right after Thanksgiving.

"It's a labor of love for my children and grandchildren," he said.

Officials say there are plenty of ways for what starts as a joyful holiday tradition to turn into tragedy.

"Faulty wiring, the overuse of extension cords, the multi-plug adapters," said Pikeville Fire Department Battalion Chief Robert Lindsey.

Osborne says fire safety is top of his list when his decorations come out.

"I love my house. I don't want to see it go up in flames because of something that I've done wrong. My plug-ins, cover them with baggies, tape them up, so there's no water than can get to anything," he said.

Officials say outdoor decorations are not the only things posing dangers. They say while most fake Christmas trees are flame retardant, live Christmas trees are not.

"If the needles are turning brown or becoming real brittle they need to look at maybe unplugging the lights if they still want to leave the tree in the home, or removing it," said Lindsey.

They suggest keeping space heaters away from the trees as they can dry them out.

"We practice safety. I'm an insurance agent. We see this thing happen every year," said Osborne.

They say with a little common sense staying fire free this Christmas should not be a problem.

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