TIPS: Avoid a house fire this holiday season - Toledo News Now, Breaking News, Weather, Sports, Toledo

TIPS: Avoid a house fire this holiday season

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TOLEDO, OH (Toledo News Now) -

Nothing will put a damper on holiday cheer quite like a house fire.

The National Fire Protection Association says on average about 230 structures burn each year because of Christmas trees, causing an estimated $17.3 million in damage.

Cooking is another potentially dangerous holiday activity. The NFPA says 156,300 home fires ignite each year because of cooking, causing 470 deaths and more than $1 billion in damage.

Use the following tips to avoid disaster at your home this holiday season:

- When setting up the Christmas tree, make sure it is at least three feet away from any heat source, like fireplaces, radiators, candles, heat vents or lights.
- Add water to the tree stand daily -- dried out trees can be a fire hazard.
- Use lights that have the label of a recognized testing laboratory.  Some lights are only for indoor or outdoor use.
- When baking, roasting, or boiling food, check  the oven regularly and remain in the home while food is cooking.

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