View Full Version : Please Remember Christmas Safety

12-19-2005, 09:49 PM

12-19-2005, 09:55 PM

I lost a house to a Christmas Tree in 1999

that year we used a Noble Fir for the first time.....

we had always had Douglas firs, and when we bought the Noble from the hardware store the guy asked me if I wanted him to trim the tree....I smelled alcohol on his breath, and figured he'd butcher it.... so I declined

well, after the fire, I learned about "Sap Cap"
A sap cap forms when the tree is cut at the cut area. and if the sap cap is not removed, it cannot draw water.

Well, we noticed the tree was not taking as much water as we were used to with Douglas Firs, and we just figured it was because it was a different species. We were wrong, one evening after Christmas my daughter plugged in the tree lights as they were leaving out the front door to go to town, about 15 minutes later, I left out the back door to go to the convenience store for a cup of coffee.... came back in time to put the fire out. Fortunatley it had been a very mild winter (up to this point) and I still had my water hose outside, had it not been for that, we would have lost everything, instead insurance paid for everything; fire damage, smoke damage, & water damage.

I didn't realize the daughter had lit the lights because I was in a different part of the house, and last time I was in the living room, the lights had not been on.

2 adults & 3 children in a single room hotel for a month is not an ideal situation, then the temps dropped to highs of 12 degrees, so we couldn't chase them outside to play. Then we upgraded.... 8 months in a 2 bedroom apartment with very limited furnishings.... insurance paid off, but we did not want to furnish an upstairs apartment just to have to move everything to our new house.

something I will never forget, my daughter had been potty trained for a long time, but after the fire she reverted back to being not potty trained, that was very difficult, as we had a young son in diapers.

12-19-2005, 10:49 PM
Amen to that!!!!! Have been in trainning with a tree that went up like that :shocked: Please be save all!!!!!

Kevin 89MC
12-20-2005, 12:53 PM
Wow, scary to see on film. My sister's neighbor almost died Christmas Eve a few years back. Threw some wrapping paper into the fireplace (1st mistake), which caught the pine branches on the mantle on fire, then spread to the tree. He sent the wife & daughter out the door and tried to get the burning tree out of the house (2nd mistake). The tree essentially exploded like in that video, and he was engulfed in flames in seconds. He got outside and rolled in the snow to get the fire out, but there were many times in the 1 year hospital stay that he almost wished he'd died, it hurt so bad. Amazingly the house was not totalled, but close. My sister went thru to take som pics. Pretty scary. He's doing OK, but has a hard time using his hands for much.
If the fire doesn't get you, the smoke will - and very quickly.
I always thought if something small started on fire, I might try to put it out, but after seeing what he went through (and that video), I think I'll put the bravery aside and just get everyone out ASAP.
Please be safe in all that we do this Christmas!

lakes Rick
12-20-2005, 01:28 PM
Many years ago, after the holidays, I was helping a neighbor at a burn pile.. When we tossed our "old" christmas trees on it they took off quicker than anything I have ever seen.. The whole tree went up at once, seemed like less than a second, before the entire tree was engulfed and the heat was tremendous.. I remember looking at my neighbor, who was about 20 years older than me, and I am sure I had the same scared look on my face as he did....

A real learning experience about fire and how quick it can kill...

Since that time I will never have a real tree in the house again.. Of course it helps with my " BAH HUMBUG" attitude also.....

east tx skier
12-20-2005, 03:23 PM
This is our second year with a real-looking artificial tree. Prior to that, we were quite adimate about knocking the bottom off the real deal and getting it in water tooth sweet. We even sprung for a nice stand with a removable water bottle so it was easy to refill. Those trees will suck that H2O down like it was going out of style.

Even with the precautions and knowing I'd miss that pine smell, there's a lot to be said for not having to put on or take off the lights each year. Tree's up and down in 5 minutes on each side. I have no complaints.

12-20-2005, 03:32 PM
My genius buddies took our tree from out in the yard in Feb and carefully placed it in the middle of my back yard. At which point they flipped a ciggie on it and it was up in about 2 seconds. All the limbs burned off and about 15 foot flames shot from the top. Needless to say there was lots of booze involved.

Of course this is the same guy who was taking a load of freshly varnished cabinets to Savannah in the back of his truck with a moving quilt over it and flipped a ciggie out the window and lit the whole back of his truck on fire.

12-10-2007, 04:15 PM
Bringing back an old but a goodie / Keep your tree watered!!!!

Check out the site below for tree care......


12-10-2007, 04:53 PM
Check the water everyday!!! No matter how much you put in a few hours ago. Christmas trees suck water in so fast in the first few days its not even funny. Also after going to the tree farm and bringing it back to the house...Cut about an inch off the bottom so you don't have a dried out stump that could lead to a fire danger. Keep your 2 liter soda bottles in hand, ready to pour!

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

12-10-2007, 05:20 PM
We went artificial a couple of years ago much to my protest. I agree with Eastie, not having to deal with the lights is worth not having the fresh tree smell. We have set a couple on fire in my backyard also and that convinced me not to have a real tree!

12-10-2007, 05:28 PM
Oh man Lanier. I guess for me I've had a "real" christmas tree ever since I can remeber and I guess that is why I am so partial to them. Honestly, as long as your not a dumb*** about having a real tree you have nothing to worry about!

Theres just something about the smell, and your cat crawling up the trunk and knocking it over and then having to tie it to the cieling! That was last Christmas, one morning before school! LOL

12-10-2007, 05:56 PM
Something else to think about from that film. The whole sequence took 48 seconds, but after about 30, the room was not survivable. If you have a fire, Any Fire, don't risk your life for possesions. Your family will agree, there's nothing truly important that money can buy.

12-10-2007, 07:44 PM
The price you pay to keep happiness in the family. Wife wanted artificial trees and I finally gave in. We have 3 trees, so lights are an all day affair. As soon as I finish the basement, I can have a real tree again.

12-10-2007, 08:16 PM
Well man,

Me being one of the few 16 year old kids on here I guess to me sometimes I forget the whole meaning of Christmas which is the birth of Jesus Christ. But lets not get religious. Honestly, If you are able to celebrate the holidays with friends and family thats all that really matters. A real tree vs. an artificial one really doesn't make a difference. I have seen videos of Christmas trees go up and ruin holidays for so many. It really is sad. But we always turn the lights off before bed or leaving the house or just if we don't feel it should be on. And every morning we check the level of water in the tree basin. I think its time for a new one of those too because when the cat knocked down the tree last year it left a nice rust stain on the carpet that has yet to come out. But Oh well...

And I don't think Santa knows the difference...;)

12-10-2007, 08:19 PM
Santa hasn't noticed the difference yet. He still comes to visit and actually gives presents whether or not the kids have been naughty or nice.:purplaugh