News | Nov. 23, 2021

Safety tips to help ensure happy holidays for all

By Fire Inspector Jamie MacFarlane, Fire & Emergency Services, DLA Installation Management Richmond

The holiday season is fast approaching, and Defense Logistics Agency Installation Management Richmond Fire and Emergency Services’ fire inspectors would like to remind everyone of the importance of safety during the holidays.

According to the National Fire Protection Association, between 2014 and 2018, fire departments nationwide responded to 160 home fires caused by Christmas trees. Choosing and maintaining a tree by watering it can make all the difference as seen in this video:  Unwatered Christmas tree vs. Watered tree burn

Fire and Emergency Services has prepared the following tips to help ensure that your holiday adventures are safe and memorable for the right reasons.

Christmas Tree Tips:

- Choose a tree with fresh, green needles that, if shaken, doesn’t shed heavily.

- Cut one to two inches off the bottom of the tree in a 45-degree angle.

- Place the tree in water right after the cut, the fresh cut allows the tree to absorb water better.

- Hydrate your tree daily and keep your tree away from heat sources.

- If your tree dries out before Christmas, dispose of it immediately.

Holiday Turkey Frying 101

The NFPA discourages the use of outdoor gas-fueled turkey fryers that cook the turkey in extremely hot oil. If proper safety precautions are not followed, the use of turkey fryers can lead to devastating burns, other injuries and property damage.

Turkey Fryer Fire Thanksgiving Day Burns Three Homes Displaces 27 Residents

Although the NFPA discourages the use of outdoor gas-fueled turkey fryers because of the grave safety hazards they pose, if you do still choose to deep fry your turkey, here are some important tips:

How To Measure Your Oil for Frying a Holiday Turkey 101

Cooking with a turkey fryer can be very dangerous due to a risk of tipping over, overheating, and spilling hot oil.

- Place your gas-fueled turkey fryer outside on a level, noncombustible surface.

- Place the turkey in the cooker.

- Put enough water in the cooker to cover the bird.

- Take the bird out and measure the amount of water left in the pot.

- Use the same amount of oil as you had water in the pot.

DSCR Work Area Holiday Decorating Tips:

- Make sure decorations comply with DLA Installation Management Richmond guidelines.

- No live trees are allowed; all trees must be artificial.

- Decorations shall be made of non-combustible materials.

- Decorations shall not be placed within 36 inches of any heat source.

- Decorations shall not interfere or obstruct building fire protection features including exits, fire doors, signage, fire extinguishers and automatic sprinkler systems.

- Decorations shall not be attached to fire extinguishers, extinguisher boxes, fire alarm pull stations or sprinkler heads.

- Do not overload circuits with decorations or appliances.

- All decorations will be subject to inspection by installation engineers and DLA Fire Prevention Office. Unsafe decorations will be removed.

For additional winter and holiday safety tips you can visit websites by the National Fire Protection Association and Federal Emergency Management Agency. If you have questions, call the DLA Installation Management Richmond Fire and Emergency Services’ Fire Prevention Office at 279-6782 or email: dscr.fireprevention@dla.mil.