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Holiday safety tips to reduce your risk of a fire

December 14, 2018

During the busy holiday season, it is important to take a few minutes to look around your home and eliminate fire risks.

Lights and decorations

Before putting up any lights, double check that the lights, sockets, wires and plugs you’re using are not damaged.

The Winnipeg Fire Paramedic Service (WFPS) wants to remind residents to make sure to only use indoor lights inside and outdoor ones outside. Make sure the lights are Canadian Standards Association (CSA) approved.

While many decorations need to be plugged in, you don’t want to overload your electrical outlets.

Turn off your lights when you are going to sleep or leaving your home.

Try to use non-flammable decorations and keep them away from head sources including vents and fireplaces.


Candles can give your home a festive feel, but you should never burn them unattended or in a drafty area.

When you do light candles, make sure to keep them away from any decorations, Christmas trees and out of reach of children.

The WFPS recommends trimming the wick before lighting the candle.

When storing them, keep candles in a cool, dark, and dry place. It is suggested to keep them in the refrigerator to make them burn slower and more evenly.

Christmas trees

If you are getting a real Christmas tree, make sure to pick one that is fresh with green needles. The tree trunk should be sticky to the touch. If you shake the tree and you notice a lot of needles falling off, the tree has probably dried out and should not be brought indoors.

When you put it up, the WFPS recommends it should be at least three feet away from all heat sources. You shouldn’t block any exits with the tree either.

Make sure to water the tree daily. If you notice the tree drying up and loosing needles quickly, take it out of the home as it is a fire risk.

Emergency and Safety