Holiday Tip of the Day: Fireplace Safety

By: Rick Pietzak

Are you planning to gather by the fireplace with loved ones this holiday? If so, chances are this will be the first time you’ve used your fireplace this season.

The UPMC Mercy Trauma and Burn Center suggests the following tips when using your wood-burning fireplace this year:

  • Keep the flue clean and clear before use.
  • Use a screen over your fireplace to keep embers from escaping.
  • Do not burn wrapping paper in the fireplace. It ignites faster and burns very hot with high flames that can cause a chimney fire.
  • Don’t burn your tree in the fireplace. Pine and fir needles ignite quickly and burn like tinder. The trees also contain sap which can explode.