Fire Marshals Warn Of Tree Dangers - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

12/17/05-Longview

Fire Marshals Warn Of Tree Dangers

Longview fire marshals are warning that the Christmas tree can be the main source of fire danger during the holiday season. Many feel the Christmas tree is the most beautiful sign of the holiday season but in seconds it can become an inferno.

"Unless someone is right there and can extinguish the fire immediately in 60 seconds, it's totally engulfed. Lights which generate heat, and presents under that add fuel load and all decorations on the trees they become an accident looking for a place to happen," says Longview Assistant Fire Marshal Mark Moore.

Once trees are dry, and have ornaments on them and other fuel sources, they become the potential for disaster. A small spark can catch a tree on fire, and in 10 seconds the tree is out of control, in 30 seconds everything surrounding it is on fire, in 45 seconds the room is choked with flames and smoke.

"If your tree catches fire get out of the house let the guys who do this for a living take care of the problem," says Moore.

Everything around a tree becomes fuel, and fire marshals say it can happen to anyone. Fire marshals say if you have a live tree, be sure to keep it well watered and keep it away from any heat source.

Bob Hallmark reporting, bhallmark@kltv.com

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