The Strongsville Fire Department is urging residents to follow these state-approved safety tips when decorating for the holidays:
State Fire Marshal Larry Flowers said three aspects of decorating -- lighting, live Christmas trees and candles -- can lead to fires.
In fact, one-third of holiday fires are electrical failures, according to the National Fire Protection Association.
• Check for damage before putting up each strand.
• Only buy lights that are UL approved.
• Don't string too many strands together.
• Don't run extension cords under rugs.
• Never use outdoor lights indoors
• Turn all lights off when you leave or go to bed.
• Get a fresh tree and keep it watered. Once it gets dry, throw it out.
• One in five holiday fires start because a head source is too close to a Christmas tree.
• Don't block your escape route with a tree or presents.
• Never leave a lit candle unattended, even for a minute.
• Don't place lit candles on or near a Christmas tree.