Keep your family safe from fire over the holidays
VICTORIA - Each year, fires during the holiday season injure British Columbians and cause thousands of dollars in property damage. Since many of these fires are preventable, the Office of the Fire Commissioner and
the Ministry of Justice are offering some basic fire safety tips, so British Columbians can enjoy a fire-safe holiday season.
Candle safety and holiday decorating
* Use non-combustible containers for tea lights and votive candles. Battery-operated candles are an excellent alternative.
* Blow out all candles before leaving the room or going to bed.
* Keep Christmas trees, wrapping and decorations away from heat sources.
* Ensure your real Christmas tree stays fresh by watering it often. Consider a fire-resistant artificial tree as an alternative.
* Ensure Menorahs are placed on a stable surface and never leave candles unattended.
* Use only lights which have been tested and labelled by an approved testing laboratory.
* Always turn tree lights off before leaving home or going to sleep.
Approved timers can be used to preset the on and off times.
* Ensure electrical outlets are not overloaded by various sources.
* Avoid using gas fireplaces when young children are present as the glass front can reach over 300 degrees Celsius and take 45 minutes to cool off.
Smoke alarms and fire escape planning
* Install working smoke alarms on every level of your home and outside each sleeping area.
* Check and clean smoke alarms regularly and change batteries at least twice a year.
* Develop a fire escape plan, practice it regularly and have two ways out of your home.