The purpose of the Quincy Fire Department's "Keep the Wreath Red" campaign during the holiday season is to remind us of the various ways that house fires can turn this time of year tragic.

This year, QFD has had ample opportunity to pass along fire safety reminders. That's because, since the wreath campaign began at Thanksgiving, there have been no less than six residential fire calls answered by Quincy fire crews.

Of the half-dozen cases, three have involved unattended food, two have started in clothes dryers and one had to do with a wood grill being too close to a house.

When it comes to kitchen fires, QFD reminds you to, "never leave your range or stove top unattended, wear short, close-fitting or tightly rolled sleeves, keep your cooking area clean and free of combustible materials, clean up any spilled grease and keep a fire extinguisher nearby."

As for fires that start in clothes dryers, "your dryer's lint filter should be cleaned before each use and you should clear the lint from around the drum once a year, or sooner, if you notice it is taking longer for your clothes to dry."

And, whatever the cause, you are reminded to always have a working smoke detector.

As it pertains to the red wreath campaign, six of the two dozen lights on the wreath have been changed from red to white.

The good news in all this is that none of these fires have caused anything other than very minor damage.

Let's hope it stays that way.

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