With winter comes more fire dangers, and the Wichita Fire Department has been busy.
On Wednesday, crews went to three fires.
The first happened at 1906 N. Arkansas at around 6 a.m.
Lt. Jose Ocadiz said the fire was caused because numerous power strips were plugged in together, then into extension cords, which eventually led to a deep freezer and some Christmas lights.
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The fire caused $90,000 worth of damage.
Extension cords should never be plugged into each other because they can overheat and spark, he said.
At 6:48 p.m. Wednesday, a candle left unattended caused a second-floor apartment at 4925 E. Shady Brook to catch fire.
The second- and third-floor apartments weren’t damaged by the flames, Ocadiz said, but the first-floor apartment received some fire damage.
A couple people on the higher levels had to be rescued from their balconies.
About $15,000 worth of damage was caused.
Then just after 8 p.m., crews were sent to a metal building that caught fire because a chiminea was left unattended, Ocadiz said. The owners had left the chiminea burning throughout the day, put on a couple more logs and left for church.
The fire caused $65,000 worth of damage.
Between 2011 and 2015, U.S. fire departments responded to 200 home fires that were caused by Christmas trees. Some fires were fatal.
Another 840 house fires were caused by decorations. Unattended candles caused more than 36 percent of those fires.
The Wichita Fire Department wants residents to keep these fire safety tips in mind around the holidays:
▪ Keep live trees well watered
▪ Choose decorations that are flame resistant or flame retardant.
▪ Keep lit candles away from decorations and other things that can burn.
▪ Some lights are only for indoor or outdoor use, not both.
▪ Replace any string of lights with worn or broken cords or loose bulb connections.
▪ Use clips, not nails, to hang lights to the cords don’t get damaged.
▪ Keep decorations away from doors and windows.