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Walker County Fire Rescue has recruited a big name to encourage residents to practice fire safety.  Before loading his sleigh, Santa Claus joined Sparky the Fire Dog in a new public service announcement (PSA) to warn the public about how the holiday season can be the most dangerous time of the year.

The PSA, which debuts this week in local schools and online, provides tips to prevent fires involving Christmas trees, lights and candles.  Santa and Sparky also share the importance of closing your bedroom door before going to sleep each night to slow the spread of fire.

Home fires that begin with a Christmas tree are more than twice as likely to result in a fatality, according to data compiled by the National Fire Protection Association.  Decorations, candles and holiday cooking also cause an average of over 800 fires each year.

The PSA continues Walker County Fire Rescue’s commitment to increase the number of working smoke alarms in homes, following five fire fatalities in Walker County in 2018.  The holiday message builds on previous efforts, including a neighborhood installation blitz, school programs and community meetings, which have resulted in 741 smoke alarm installations this year, a 225% increase over last year.

Any Walker County resident in need of free smoke alarms should contact Walker County Fire Rescue at 706-539-1255 to schedule an appointment for installation.