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Holiday & winter safety

​This holiday and winter season, you and your family can do a lot to prevent fire and injuries at home, and keep one another safe.

12 Days of Holiday Safety

We want you, your family, friends and house guests, to enjoy a safe and happy holiday season, so we’re sharing one simple daily safety tip on each of the 12 (business) days before December 25th. Please follow us on Twitter, where you’ll see our daily safety tip first. Every day we will update our 12 Days of Holiday Safety, here on this page, and provide you with links and additional information on how you can apply these tips in your home.

  • Day 1: Keep your family safe over the holidays by having working smoke alarms on every floor of your home.
  • Day 2: Snow is part of Calgary life. Clear sidewalks of snow & ice to keep Calgary Safe.
  • Day 3: Never leave cooking unattended, it can quickly become a kitchen fire.
  • Day 4: Be prepared for an emergency over the holidays with a 72 hour emergency preparedness kit.
  • Day 5: Holiday lights are for indoor or outdoor use only, not both. Make the right choice this season.
  • Day 6: Prevent fires and blow out candles before you leave a room or go to bed.
  • Day 7: LED candles are a safe alternative to real candles in decorations & around your home.
  • Day 8: Never run extension cords under the carpet or use as permanent wiring.
  • Day 9: Call 911 in an emergency. Make sure you and your visitors know the address and location of where they are.
  • Day 10: Have a home escape plan and practice it with your family and guests over the holidays.
  • Day 11: We use CO-producing appliances more in the winter. Have working CO alarms in your home.
  • Day 12:  Do you use a fireplace or wood stove? Before using them have a fresh air supply in your home. 

Indoor and outdoor holiday lights

Lighting, both indoors and outdoors, help us celebrate the holiday season by making our homes and communities beautiful. However, they can also be the cause of a fire in your home.

  • Ensure you use outdoor lights outdoors, and indoor lights indoors.
  • Ensure your lights have a sticker to show they meet CSA standards or are CSA approved.
  • Never string more than the recommended number of lights together.
  • Know your limits when installing lights. Make sure you have the right tools, such as appropriate ladder, for harder to reach areas.
  • Always turn off all indoor and outdoor lights before going to bed or leaving your house.
  • Inspect your lights before putting them up; check for cracked bulbs and replace them and replace your string of lights if it has any frayed, broken or exposed wires.

Christmas trees

Many Calgarians put up Christmas trees to celebrate the holidays. To prevent a fire in your home, remember to:

  • Get a freshly cut tree. When a tree is green and well watered, it is less likely to catch on fire.
  • Get a tree that is moist and green. You can tell if a tree is moist because very few needles fall off when the butt of the tree is tapped on the ground, needles bend instead of break, and the tree stump is sticky with resin.
  • Use a tree stand with a broad base for good balance and space for a lot of water to keep your tree hydrated. Make sure the base of the tree is always in water.
  • Do not set your tree up near a heat source such as a radiator, television, fireplace or heating duct and is not in the way of doors or windows.
  • Never use lit candles on your  tree.
  • Always choose flame-resistant or flame-retardant and non-combustible decorations on your tree and everywhere in your home.
  • After the holidays, properly dispose of trees as soon as possible using our Christmas tree recycling program.


Just like indoor and outdoor holiday lights, we use candles during the holidays to make our homes beautiful and celebrate the season. To help prevent a fire started by a candle;

  • Keep candles away from curtains, paper, furniture or anything that can easily catch fire.
  • Adults should always supervise when candle is being lit. Children should never be left alone to light a candle or use matches.
  • Keep candles in sturdy, stable holders and sit them on stable surfaces away from drafts, children or pets.
  • Use LED candles instead of wax or burning candles, they are a safe alternative.

Kitchen fires

During the holidays, we often celebrate by inviting friends and family over to enjoy a meal. Cooking fires are the leading cause of house fires and fire injuries. Learning how to prevent cooking fires is important during the holidays and all year.

Home escape plans and holiday visitors

If you have family, friends or guests staying with you over the holidays, be sure to share your home escape plan with them when they arrive.