Why Firefighters Say Your Christmas Tree Should Get Tossed Out Now

Firefighters are reporting a significant spike in fires from Christmas trees toward the end of January.

So, they recommend disposing of trees sooner rather than later.

“A lot of people don't realize that house fires with Christmas trees happen after the holidays. A lot of people in the fire department don’t even realize it,” said Jason Evans, Public Information Officer with Dallas Fire-Rescue.

NBC 5 met a father who is not taking any chances. He took his tree down days ago, saying the longer it's in the house, the more he had to be on guard.

“Maybe something's going to happen to the connection. You gotta take it down and be safe," said Mike Al Ashoor.

Chances are the tree in your home was first cut down in October and sat drying out on trucks, tree lots and then in your living room.

With the temperature dropping outside, we blast the heat, which makes matters worse.

Weeks ago, the Fort Worth Fire Department demonstrated how a fresh cut tree with water in its leaves doesn't burn. They also showed how one that's dried out goes up in flames quickly.

The dry trees are a big reason why fires spike significantly at the end of January. More than a third of Christmas tree fires happen then, according to Evans.

Evans said even those who are good about the watering in December start to slack off now.

“During the holiday people are aware of the need to hydrate the tree, they want to look good for pictures and whatnot. But after Christmas passes, people forget they still need to get that tree hydrated,” he said.

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