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Officials urge safety over holidays
Cooking, heating fires a concern
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Forsyth County News

The Forsyth County Fire Department is encouraging the public to keep safety in mind this holiday season.

"Responsible use of items such as heating devices, decorations and candles can play a role in preventing fires and injuries," said Fire Chief Danny Bowman.

The department recommends keeping portable heating devices at least three feet from combustible materials, such as drapes and furniture.

Residents should also avoid using extension cords with heaters, and follow the manufacturers’ recommendations.

To avoid carbon monoxide poisoning, the department advised against using unvented gas heaters in enclosed spaces.

Christmas trees should be kept away from heat sources, such as fireplaces or heat vents.

Public safety officials recommend recycling as a means of disposing of natural trees.

Holiday lights should be inspected annually for frayed wires, bare spots or other damage and electrical outlets should not be overloaded.

Lit candles should be in stable holders, placed where they cannot be knocked over easily. Don’t ever leave them unattended.

When it comes to keeping little ones safe, the department recommends giving children toys that are appropriate for age, abilities, skills and interest level.

Strings and ribbons should be removed from toys before being given to young children. Toys with pull strings more than 12 inches long should be used with caution as they could pose a strangulation hazard for babies.