The Johnston Fire Metropolitan Fire Department is continuing a great holiday tradition for the fourth year in a row. The public safety campaign is known as "Keep the Wreath Red," promotes fire safety as thousands of Johnston residents decorate for the holidays.
Johnston-Grimes firefighters have placed one wreath outside the Public Safety Building, located at 6373 Merle Hay Road in Johnston. The wreath is decorated with a string of red lights. If a fire occurs in the city that can be attributed to holiday decorations, firefighters will replace one of the red light bulbs with a white bulb. The mission for our community is to "Keep the Wreath Red" during the holiday season. Since the department began the campaign four years ago, they have not had to change a bulb to white, and fire crews hope to keep it this way.
Fire safety tips that can help Keep the Wreath Red include:
- Consider an artificial tree; they are much safer.
- If you purchase a real tree, select only fresh trees that are deep green in color, have a strong scent of pine, and do not easily lose their needles.
- Keep the holding stand for real trees full of water.
- Place trees away from heat sources and a safe distance from exits.
- Do not rely on chemical sprays to make a tree flame resistant.
- Buy and use lights approved by a national testing laboratory. LED lights are the safest lights because they do not generate very much heat.
- Discard any lights that have frayed or worn cords, cracked sockets, broken or loose connections, bare wires, or operate intermittently.
- Never use indoor lights outdoors. Do not overload electrical outlets. Keep the use of extension cords to a minimum.
- Do not run extension cords under carpets, across doorways, or near heaters.
- Unplug lights when you leave home and before going to bed.
- Extinguish all candles when leaving the room or going to sleep.
- Keep candles away from items that can catch fire, like clothing, books, and curtains.
- Use candle holders that are sturdy, won't tip over easily, are made from a material that cannot burn, and are large enough to collect dripping wax.
- Keep matches, lighters, and candles out of the reach of children.
- Burn only dry wood in the fireplace.
- Never burn Christmas wrapping paper in the fireplace. The paper burns too hot and too fast and could cause a fire in the chimney.