Oh Christmas Tree: the Hazards of Holiday Decorating

Christmas Room Interior Design, Xmas Tree Decorated By Lights

The holiday season is in full swing, which can only mean one thing: decorations. Trees, lights, stockings, and mistletoe are being put up in homes across the country. Here are some hazards to be aware of while decorating your home.

Christmas Trees

Whether you prefer a real or artificial tree to decorate your home, there are safety precautions that should always be taken. A fresh Christmas tree poses less of a fire hazard than a dried out tree. When checking your trees freshness, pay attention to the needles and the trunk. A fresh tree will have green needles that are harder to pull out of the tree and will not break if bent. Additionally, live trees will produce resin at the base of the trunk. A dry tree is much more likely to catch fire than a live tree. Most artificial trees are now made to be fire resistant, but that doesn’t mean you should be careless. Keep your tree, real or artificial, away from the fireplace, portable heater, or any other heat source.


Christmas lights can be placed almost anywhere, inside and outside the house. Whether you are opening a brand new package of lights or using a string you’ve had for years, always make sure to check for frayed or bare wires or loose connections. If damaged, these lights could spark a fire in the home. Use high quality extension cords with a ground plug when attaching lights or other holiday decorations. Do not use too many extension cords attached together. If you decorate the outside of your home with these lights, make sure to take precaution when setting them up. Only set up lights when the weather is appropriate, and have a spotter with you while on a ladder. Make sure all lights are securely fastened, because one strong wind could rip them off the house and cause damage to the siding or roof.


The fireplace is a staple of Christmas traditions. There is something magical about sitting by the fireplace while drinking hot cocoa on a cold and snowy night. When lighting a fire in the fireplace, move all flammable objects a safe distance away from the fireplace. Check to make sure the flue is open before starting a fire. Always have a screen in front of the fireplace while the fire is burning to keep it contained. Never leave the fire unattended.


If you ask most people about mistletoe, they would probably tell you it is something that you kiss under during the holiday season, and they’re right. But there are hazards to mistletoe, holly, and other berries used for decoration during this season. Mistletoe and holly are both poisonous if swallowed. Be sure to keep it out of reach for children and pets.

Your friends at Kasmer Insurance wish you and your loved ones a Merry Christmas. Call us, email us, or check out our Facebook page if you have questions about coverage this holiday season.

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