RIVERSIDE, Calif. Wednesday, December 11, 2013 — The American Red Cross urges residents to take extra precautions with cooking and decorating this holiday season. Christmas Day, Christmas Eve and Thanksgiving are the top three days for cooking fires, according to the National Fire Prevention Association. Nationally, the Red Cross responds to a disaster on average every eight minutes, and the vast majority of these disasters are home fires.
“Cooking is the leading cause of home fires, and as people are cooking, entertaining, and stringing lights this holiday season, we’re urging that they take safety measures to ensure that their homes and loved ones are safe from the threat of fire,” said Maxine Margaritis, regional CEO, American Red Cross serving Orange, Riverside and San Bernardino Counties.
Additionally, Christmas trees account for hundreds of fires annually. One of every three home Christmas tree fires are caused by electrical problems and roughly one of every six Christmas tree fires is due to a heat source too close to the tree.
Home fires can be prevented. The Red Cross encourages everyone to take simple steps to keep their homes and loved ones safe from home fires this holiday season.
People should also download the free American Red Cross First Aid app, which provides instant access to information on handling the most common first aid emergencies. The apps can be downloaded from the Apple App Store and the Google Play Store for Android by searching for American Red Cross or by going to redcross.org/mobileapps.
About the American Red Cross:
The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies about 40 percent of the nation's blood; teaches skills that save lives; provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a not-for-profit organization that depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. For more information, please visit redcross.org or visit us on Twitter at @RedCross.