Posted: Nov 27, 2012 5:27 PM by Brittany Weiss
Updated: Nov 27, 2012 7:14 PM
BATON ROUGE - A Christmas tree can bust into flames within seconds, if safety precautions are not taken this holiday season.
Real or fake, homes around the country catch fire every year because of dry trees or electrical problems in a home.
This holiday season, be sure to observe "the three feet" rule, setting your tree at least three feet away from fire hazards which include fireplaces and heaters.
If your tree is artificial, look for the label "fire resistant." If it's a live tree, check for freshness and trim the base. Heated homes can dry live trees, so be sure to water the the tree daily.
"I always cut a little off the base and drill some holes in the trunk," said Carey Beam.
Check lights - even if they're new - for broken lights and wires. Before using lights outdoors, check labels and make sure they have been certified for outdoor use.
If you aren't going to be home, your lights shouldn't be on.
"I unplug everything," said Beam. "I turn everything off at night, inside and outside."
For more tips from the U. S. Consumer Products Safety Commission about safe holiday decorating, click here.