Phila. Fire Officials Warn of Holiday Season’s Special Fire Dangers

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By Paul Kurtz

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PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — The Philadelphia Fire Department today issued its annual list of safety tips for the holidays.

Fire commissioner Lloyd Ayers gave a demonstration of how to properly slice the base off a freshly cut Christmas tree.

“You want to make sure you take a half-inch to one-inch cut,” he said, adding, “This cut was pre-started so we wouldn’t be here all day.  It’s cutting nice and smooth.”

The commissioner had a couple of dozen guests with him this time: elementary school students who were newly inducted members of the Junior Fire Patrol.

“Keep portable heaters away from live trees. Place tree trimmings and decorations away from a heat source,” recited one.

“Check water level daily and add more water if needed,” said another.

“Test smoke alarm batteries once a week,” added a third.

(New members of the Junior Fire Patrol are sworn in at Fire Administration headquarters, 3rd and Spring Garden Streets.  Photo by Paul Kurtz)

(New members of the Junior Fire Patrol are sworn in at Fire Administration headquarters, 3rd and Spring Garden Streets. Photo by Paul Kurtz)

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They were commonsense — and very important — tips for a season that carries its own unique fire dangers.

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