News

Play it safe with candles & Xmas lights

You should test all the smoke detectors on every level of your home, advises Port Coquitlam Fire and Emergency Services, as well as replace batteries once a year. Left, PoCo firefighter Steve Wright shows a smoke detector.  - TRI-CITY NEWS FILE PHOTO
You should test all the smoke detectors on every level of your home, advises Port Coquitlam Fire and Emergency Services, as well as replace batteries once a year. Left, PoCo firefighter Steve Wright shows a smoke detector.
— image credit: TRI-CITY NEWS FILE PHOTO

Christmas lights and decorative candles may give a home a festive feel but they can also be hazardous, according to Port Coquitlam Fire and Emergency Services. The holidays present a unique set of fire dangers, mixing lights and decorations with combustible materials such as trees and wrapping paper.

PoCo’s fire department said it is important for residents to choose flame-resistant decorations and blow out candles prior to leaving a room.

Only intact strings of lights without loose light bulbs or broken or frayed wires should be used for decorating the home or Christmas tree, and people should avoid overloading their electrical circuits.

Port Coquitlam Fire and Emergency Services also recommends people:

• keep anything that can burn at least one metre away from portable space heaters, fireplaces, furnaces, candles or wood stoves;

• use clips when hanging holiday lights as staples may damage electrical cords;

• use a maximum of three sets of lights per extension cord;

• buy real trees only if they have green needles that are hard to pull from branches and keep them watered;

• and test all smoke alarms on every level of the home (batteries should be replaced at least once a year).

For more information and holiday safety tips, go to www.portcoquitlam.ca/fire.

gmckenna@tricitynews.com

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