Avon Fire & Rescue Service (AF&RS) have issued some key advice to help you stay safe after they attended 183 fires last December (2022).

What are your Christmas traditions? Perhaps you’re enjoying a real Christmas tree, have almost finished your advent candle or even planned your Christmas day feast! However you spend the lead up to the big day, it’s important to understand the risks that Christmas presents, and how to enjoy yourself safely.

Temporary Area Manager Steve Quinton said: “We want you to have a brilliant Christmas with your loved ones and staying safe doesn’t have to spoil your fun.

“Just a few things like making sure to water your real Christmas tree, keeping candles in safe places and testing those smoke alarms can greatly reduce your risk of an accident.”

AF&RS issued this advice:

  • If you’ve got a real Christmas tree, be sure to water it regularly as dry trees are extremely flammable.
  • Opt for LED candles where possible. If using real candles, make sure they are in proper holders and burn them well out of reach of children, pets and flammable materials like tinsel. Extinguish your candles fully before going out or going to bed.
  • Test your smoke alarms weekly, particularly before you cook your Christmas dinner. Keep your eyes on your cooking and don’t go out whilst things are cooking.

Steve added: “At AF&RS, we’d like to give you a gift this Christmas. We invite you to use our free home fire safety checker. It takes just 15 minutes and will give you personalised advice to help keep you and your loved ones safe from fire at home. "