Put a Freeze on Winter Fires

Put a Freeze on Winter Fires 

NFPA and the United States Fire Administration (USFA) are teaming up to remind you that the winter months are the leading time of year for home fires. To help you stay safe, we’re providing a wealth of safety tips and information on cooking, heating, candles and holiday decorating – factors that contribute to the increased risk of home fires in the months ahead.

Free resources

Put a Freeze on Winter Fires infographic

Download our infographic (PDF, 1 MB) for your website or newsletter.

Facts and figures

Holiday decorations

  • On average, one of every 40 reported home fires that began with a Christmas tree resulted in a death, compared to an average of one death per 142 total reported home fires.
  • Electrical problems were factors in one-third (32%) of home Christmas tree structure fires.
  • The decoration was too close to heat source in nearly half (47%) of the fires.
  • Candles started 41% of home decoration structure fires.
    Source: NFPA Fire Analysis and Resrch Division


  • Space heaters, whether portable or stationary, accounted for one-third (33%) of home heating fires and four out of five (81%) of home heating fire deaths.
  • The leading factor contributing to home heating fires (28%) was failure to clean, principally creosote from solid-fueled heating equipment, primarily chimneys.
    Source: NFPA's “Home Fires Involving Heating Equipment" report.

Video: NFPA President Jim Pauley talks about the Put a Freeze on Winter Fires campaign. Read the news release.


Keep fire safety in mind when heating your home in the winter months ahead. December, January and February are the leading months for home heating fires. Overall, heating equipment is the second leading cause of U.S. home fires and home fire deaths.

Video: Heating equipment is the second leading cause of U.S. home fires and home fire deaths. Fortunately, the vast majority of home heating fires can be prevented by following some simple steps and guidelines.


On average, 29 home candle fires were reported each day (between 2007 and 2011). More than half of home candle fires occur when candles are placed too close to things that can burn.

Video: NFPA's Lisa Braxton shares a few candle fire safety tips to consider.

Holiday decorations

Use care when decorating your home this holiday season. Nearly half of holiday decoration fires happen because decorations are placed too close to a heat source, while two out of every five home decoration fires are started by candles.

Video: NFPA encourages prompt removal of Christmas trees after the holidays, as nearly 40 percent of U.S. Christmas tree fires occur in January.

Video: NFPA offers fire safety tips and advice for safely decorating your home this holiday season, particularly when using candles.

Video: Christmas trees can be a potential fire hazard. NFPA offers tips and advice for safely placing and decorating them in the home, and shows how quickly a dried out Christmas tree can burn.

Holiday cooking

Did you know that Thanksgiving is the leading day for cooking fires? In fact, there are three times as many fires on Thanksgiving Day as any other typical day of the year.

Video: NFPA's Lisa Braxton explains how a few simple safety tips can protect you and your family from a potentially devastating home fire.

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