An electrical malfunction in some decorations set off a fire that caused an estimated $100,000 in damage to a home in Bear.
The fire started around 8:30 Monday night in the garage of a home on Thomas Jefferson Blvd. in the Christiana Green neighborhood in Bear. Firefighters from the Christiana Fire Co. found fire and smoke coming from the garage, with the flames extending to the exterior of the rest of the house.
Several other fire companies were called to the scene to help extinguish the fire.
Deputy Fire Marshals determined the fire was accidental, caused by an electrical malfunction in Christmas decorations.
There were no known injuries. Damage is estimated at $100,000.
State officials warn that home fires are a problem during the holiday season due to a number of hazards. They offer the following tips to keep your home safe:
Make sure all decorations are made of fire-resistant materials.
Keep decorations and trees clear of sources of heat or flame such as radiators, fireplaces, and candles.
Don’t overload electrical outlets by inserting too many plugs into one outlet.
Avoid lighted candles. Many holiday home fires are started by candles. If you do use them, place them far away from combustibles like curtains and in a place where they can’t get knocked over.
Never leave candles burning in an empty room.
Keep natural Christmas trees moist—dry needles can catch fire. Trees need up to a gallon of water a day to keep fresh.
Turn off holiday lights when you’re not home.
Don’t use a fireplace without a metal screen or glass doors in place, and don’t burn wrapping paper in the fireplace.
Don’t leave discarded gift wrap near a fireplace, candles, or heat sources.
Use only UL-approved extension cords and lights.
Don’t run extension cords under rugs or staple them to the wall or floor—you could damage the insulation, expose the wires, and start a fire.
Use lights and extension cords outdoors that are waterproof and approved for outdoor use.