Many of us relish this time of year—the holiday season. It is a chance to gather with loved ones and celebrate. From Thanksgiving to New Year’s Day, the last three months are jam-packed with seasonal decor, warm, cherished moments, and unfortunately, a heightened risk of fires. 


Hanukkah is a very important holiday for millions in the U.S. During this period, a menorah burns for eight days in recognition of the rebellion and successful recapture of the holy temple. It is also a time for family gatherings and a lot of cooking. Cooking-related fires are significantly higher during this holiday. 

The National Fire Protection Association (NFP) offers some safe cooking practices that can keep you and your family safe. When frying, 

  • Bring your cooking oil to the desired temperature slowly. 
  • Place food gently in the pan to avoid splatter. 
  • Keep a lid at a close distance from the pan in case of a fire. 
  • Maintain constant supervision while cooking. 

In addition to implementing safe cooking practices, it is important to note that candle-related fires account for 1.5 percent of fires each year and are highest in the month of December. Unattended candles are the leading cause of fires during this holiday period. 

Here are some tips on keeping you and your loved ones safe from candle-related fires. 

  • Use a menorah made of metal or ceramic, as those materials are fire-resistant. 
  • Ensure that candles are placed securely in the holders. 
  • Make sure candles are at least four feet away from flammable objects such as curtains, bedding, and furniture. 
  • Keep candles and matches out of children’s reach. 


The Christmas season is one of the most anticipated holidays for both children and adults across the country. However, many of the aspects that make the season so special also make it highly prone to fires. 

According to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), Christmas Eve and Christmas Day are two of the leading days for home fires. 

Christmas Trees, decorations, and candles

Firefighters respond to an average of 200 home fires caused by Christmas trees each year. Even more alarming is that a Christmas tree fire can spread in a matter of seconds, especially if it is dry. 

Real Christmas trees are more fire-prone than artificial trees; however, it is important to purchase fire-retardant trees from reputable manufacturers. 

One of the biggest causes of fire during the holidays is placing objects too close to heat sources. 

A lit-up Christmas tree is such an important part of the holidays; however, when it comes to fires, it is important to take several precautions to ensure a merry holiday season. 

The NFPA provides a detailed guideline on what to watch out for and how to keep the home safe during the holiday season. 

  • Try to get the freshest Christmas tree, and avoid trees with drying pine needles. 
  • Place the tree in a sturdy stand and ensure it is at least three feet away from any heat source. Also, make sure the tree is not blocking any exits. 
  • Remember to water the tree daily to keep it fresh, as this significantly reduces the risk of fire. 
  • When decorating the tree, purchase flame-resistant decorations. 
  • Do not use lights that have not been tested or are not designed for indoor use. 
  • Ensure all bulbs and wires are in good condition, as broken or exposed wires can be a fire hazard. 
  • Do not use candles to decorate your tree. 
  • Remember to turn off your Christmas tree decorations and blow out any candles before leaving the house or going to bed. 


Every Thanksgiving, millions of Americans drive and fly to be with loved ones, enjoying traditional and non-traditional fixings and consuming tons of turkey. 

There are a hundred and one ways to prepare Turkey. However, oven-roasted and fried are the most popular. 

CaseyGerry fire attorneys enjoy spending Thanksgiving with loved ones, but each year, we hold out hope for a drop in the exponential rate of cooking fires that occur on this holiday. 

Statistically, Thanksgiving has the highest incidence rate of home fires compared to all the other holidays celebrated in the country. Despite efforts by safety agencies who diligently inform the public on fire safety, it is still a concerning statistic. 

According to a report by the Consumer Protection Commission Service, cooking is the leading cause of fires in homes. In addition, there are about 1600 cooking-related fires on Thanksgiving Day, three times more than any other day in the year. 

Thanksgiving is about three things: giving thanks, family, and food, with turkey as the centerpiece at the majority of dinner tables across the country. As mentioned above, there are many ways to prepare it, with oven-roasted and deep-fried topping the list as the most popular cooking methods. Incidentally, many home fires on Thanksgiving are cooking-related, with deep-frying turkey being one of the leading causes of fires. 

Turkey preparation can be safe and enjoyable, even for deep-fried turkey. But, as this method involves dipping a whole turkey into a hot pot of oil, it can be extremely dangerous if not done safely. 

The US Fire Safety Department offers guidelines on frying turkey safely. 

  • Make sure to fry the turkey at least 10 feet away from any structure or foliage. 
  • Make sure the pan is securely placed on a flat, sturdy surface. 
  • Ensure children and pets stay away from the pan. 
  • Do not overfill the pan with oil to avoid overflow. 
  • Ensure the turkey is fully thawed, as frozen turkey will cause the oil to splatter. 
  • Use a cooking thermometer to monitor the temperature of the oil at all times.

Finally, our fire lawyers advise you to purchase quality products from reputable manufacturers. Unfortunately, fires can still occur despite taking all necessary precautions. These can be caused by faulty or defective electric devices, including lights, outlets, and more. 

CaseyGerry has helped thousands of individuals who have been impacted by home fires. We have witnessed the devastation an occurrence like this can have on a family. This is why we continue to promote fire safety and provide legal assistance for those who seek justice. 

For questions about our fire litigation practice, please click our FREE consultation button.

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