Firefighters say a house fire in Harrison, Ark. is a scary reminder for Christmas light safety

Published: Dec. 15, 2022 at 4:56 PM CST
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HARRISON, Ark. (KY3) - The Harrison Fire Department responded to a residential fire call in the Skyline Heights neighborhood Tuesday related to Christmas lights.

After a neighbor reported smoke coming from the home, firefighters on the scene worked to put out the flames in a living addition to the home’s garage. They contained the flames without any injuries or total loss of the structure. Firefighters believe the fire started as a result of an overloaded circuit.

“During the initial investigation and interviews with the occupant, it was understood that he had probably plugged the wrong kind of heater into an outlet and cord that wouldn’t hold it,” said Harrison Fire Chief Marc Lowery.

Chief Lowery says the close call is a reminder for families to be safe this holiday season and also cautious of energy consumption.

“Excessive use of extension cords, putting extension cords under furniture, putting pressure on them,” he mentioned. “Christmas trees, real vs. fake; real ones can create a hazard because of a lack of water. We’re fixing to go into next week with a really cold spell, and these space heaters are going to draw a lot of juice.”

The Harrison Fire Department says the best things to keep in mind:

- Try to disperse energy in your home across different breakers

- Spare no expense when purchasing extension cords, especially for outdoor use

- Plug space heaters directly into an outlet.

Denis Pellerin has one of the most well-known Christmas displays in Harrison. With an estimated 30,000 lights, it takes nearly 100 hours to set up.

“Every year, we try to go and add to it. We usually raid the big box stores right after Christmas and see what we can find as far as big deals,” he told KY3.

Pellerin says with such a large operation you should take these safety precautions.

“We try as much as possible to use outdoor extension cords, and any that have exposed connections, we tape them up to keep the water out of them,” he said.

Pellerin’s home is a part of the Harrison Carl Bear Spirit of Christmas Light Tour.

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