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Winter Holidays Safety

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The winter holiday season creates a festive atmosphere in many of our homes with trees, tinsel, strings of lights and garland, candles and lots of cooking.  So, learn to care for your holiday décor while keeping your home and loved-ones safe.


Learn more about tree care from the Christmas Tree Association.

  • Water daily to keep tree freshest.
  • Turn off lights during the day when no one is home and at night when you go to bed.
  • It is best to discard trees within one month of purchase unless the tree begins to drop needles sooner.


  • Tinsel is especially harmful to animals, don’t use within their reach.
  • Glass ornaments and small pieces can be a choking hazard keep them out of reach of small children.

Electrical Cords

  • Check all electrical cords including light strings for damage.
  • Don’t use damaged cords or attempt to repair with tape.
  • Secure cords so no one can trip over them.

Candles and fire places

 Learn more about No Burn Days from the county's Clean Air Make More program.

  • Never leave candles unattended and keep combustibles at least 3 feet away from your candle.
  • Fire places and chimneys should be cleaned and free of hazards. Make sure your chimney flues are open prior to use.
  • A fire screen helps keep embers and sparks contained within the fireplace.

Cooking Safety

  • NEVER leave cooking unattended.
  • Use timers to remind you that something is on the stove or in the oven and turn off appliances as soon as you finish cooking.
  • Use heavy-duty oven mitts to remove or handle hot pots and pans.
  • Cook on the rear burners to keep pan handles away from the reach of young children. 

Smoke Alarms and Carbon Monoxide Detectors

  • Have a working smoke alarms installed in the hallways outside of bedrooms and in common areas.
  • Test the detectors monthly to make sure the batteries work, change the batteries annually.
  • Install a carbon monoxide detector in areas near gas appliances.

Fire Extinguishers

  • Have several fire extinguishers around the home, especially one near the kitchen
  • Take a class from the fire department on how to effectively use a fire extinguisher to put out a small fire.
  • Remember the word PASS to help you remember how to use a fire extinguisher.
    • Pull the pin
    • Aim the hose at the base of the fire
    • Squeeze the lever
    • Sweep the hose at the base of the fire


  • Many human treats are harmful to animals.  Feed your pets only foods made especially for them.
  • Pets can knock over trees and candles and other holiday decorations.  Secure your décor and keep pets away.

Sign up for a free safety assessment of your home

Tempe Fire Medical Rescue can do a Home Safety Survey of your home.  Sign up for a visit from a representative who will assess general safety and install a free smoke detector.  

To schedule a visit, contact the Community Risk Reduction division at 480-858-7230.