BUTTE COUNTY, Calif. - If you are having trouble parting ways with your Christmas trees, this statistic might help you.
According to the National Fire Protection Association about 1/3 of U.S. home fires that started with a Christmas tree, started after Christmas, in January.
The NFPA's Vice President of Outreach and Advocacy says the trees are combustible items that become increasingly flammable as they dry out.
Butte County Cal Fire's Rick Carhart says it's important to get rid of them sooner than later.
"We don't encourage people to keep them up for too long after Christmas. We encourage people to get them down and get them out of there, because this is the time of the year the house is cold, people are using heaters, it is hotter in the house, and it is dryer in the house," said Carhart.
Carhart added if you are using another heat source, like a space heater, those can be dangerous around Christmas trees.
"They go up literally like a torch, because it is dead wood, and dry needles, and those needles will start burning within a couple seconds," said Carhart.
The NFPA says their statistics show, "that Christmas tree fires are not common, but when they do occur, they’re much more likely to be serious. On annual average, one of every 52 reported home fires that began with a Christmas tree resulted in a death, compared
"And then when that thing is on fire, it can catch your house on fire, and unfortunately fairly easy if you are not doing the right thing," said Carhart.
Two women in Chico explained to Action News Now how their families dispose of trees.
"Both my parents are firefighters, so they are aware of the dangers that a dry Christmas tree can have, and if it has lights on it it can catch fire pretty easily, so they already got rid of theirs," said Jamie Engel.
"So they live in a nice little neighborhood that has a little pick up service and the Boy Scouts will come pick it up for them," said Mikaela Carlson.
If your Christmas tree is still up at home and you need a place to drop it off, here are a few spots.
If you live in Chico, you can recycle your Christmas tree and help fish in Lake Oroville at the same time.
Boy Scout Troop Two is once again offering Christmas tree recycling, with the trees being used to improve fish habitat.
The scouts will pick up trees within the city of Chico on Saturday, Jan. 11
To register for pick-up, CLICK HERE.
The service is free but donations are accepted.
In Gridley, you can drop Christmas trees off for free disposal at Harris Tree Service, at 302 East Evans Reimer Road.
Simply leave them by the wooden snowman. The trees will be chipped into mulch, which will be given away for free.
The city of Redding said Christmas trees will be picked up curbside on your regular collection day the week of Jan. 6 through Jan. 10. The city is asking residents to cut your tree into pieces no more than 4” long.
Residential customers can also bring their trees to the Transfer Station for free during the month of January. A current copy of your solid waste utility bill and photo I.D. are required. For more details, CLICK HERE.