New Canaan Fire Marshal: Taking Down Christmas Trees 


Christmas Tree Recycling at the Steve Benko Pool lot, January 2022. Photo courtesy of Planet New Canaan

Taking down the Christmas tree isn’t nearly as much fun as putting it up. But the longer a tree stays up, the greater a fire hazard it becomes. All Christmas trees can burn, but a dried-out tree can become engulfed in flames in a matter of seconds. In a year where many people began decorating their homes earlier than usual, trees have been in homes longer than usual, presenting an increased risk of fire as the days go by. 

  1. When Christmas is over or the tree begins to drop needles, dispose of it. 
  2. Do not leave it in the house or store it in the garage. 
  3. Never burn a tree in the fireplace or wood stove. 
  4. To dispose of your tree, it can be taken to the Steve Benko pool in Waveny Park from December 30th-January 8th where it will be recycled and used to resurface the trails at the Nature Center. This is a joint effort between the Town and Planet New Canaan. After January 8 you may take the tree to the Transfer Station at 139 Lakeview Avenue. Both are free of charge. 

Keep in mind these safety tips when removing lights and decorations and storing them properly to ensure that they are in good working order next year.

  1. Use the gripping area on a plug when unplugging electrical decorations. Never pull the cord to unplug any device from an electrical outlet. 
  2. As you pack up light strings, inspect each line for damage. Throw out any sets that are damaged. 
  3. Wrap each set of lights and put them in a plastic bag or wrap them around a piece of cardboard. 
  4. Store electrical decorations in a dry place away from children or pets.

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