An 8-year-old girl was rescued by firefighters from a Pomona home after a Christmas tree caught fire, trapping her in the bathroom of her family’s apartment. According to a KTLA news report, the fire broke out at the two-story apartment building, located at 1614 E. Kingsley Street. Los Angeles County firefighters responded to the fire and were notified that there was a person trapped inside.
Smoke Inhalation Injuries
The girl’s mother, identified as Nelly Contreras, said she made several attempts to reach her daughter, but wasn’t able to do so. All of a sudden the power went out and her daughter’s screams for her stopped. Emergency personnel sprung into action and rescued the young girl. They used a hose line to knock back some of the intense flames while other firefighters were able to crawl on their hands and knees to search the apartment.
It was during this search that they located the little girl who was trapped and hiding inside the bathtub. The girl was transported to Children’s Hospital Orange County with smoke inhalation injuries. Officials said she was placed on a ventilator. Investigators believe the Christmas tree in the family’s living room caused the fire.
We are relieved that firefighters were able to rescue this little girl. We wish her the very best for a speedy and complete recovery.
Christmas Tree Fires and Safety
According to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), between 2014 and 2018, U.S. fire departments responded to about 160 home fires that started with Christmas trees per year. These fires caused an average of two deaths, 14 injuries and $10 million in direct property damage annually.
Electrical distribution or lighting equipment was involved in nearly half (45%) of residential Christmas tree fires. In more than 22% of the Christmas tree fires, some type of heat source, such as a candle or equipment was too close to the fire. Nearly 15% of Christmas tree fires were intentional. Most of these fires occurred in December or January. More than two out of every five home Christmas tree fires started in the living room.
Here are a few safety tips to prevent fires caused by Christmas trees or decorations:
- Make sure string lights have no loose connections, cracked lamps or frayed cords.
- Use only a single extension cord that can reach your home’s outlet without being too long and getting tangled.
- Make sure lights are off when you go out and before you go to bed.
- Never use candles to light or decorate a tree
- Make sure to keep your tree at least 3 feet away from any heat source.
- Water the tree every day and remove it from your home after Christmas or once it becomes dry.
If you believe that you or a loved one has been injured by a defective product, you may be able to seek compensation for your injuries, damages and losses. An experienced product defect lawyer will be able to help you better understand your legal rights and options.