Weekly Feature

2017-12-13 / Editorials

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HOLIDAY FIRE SAFETY— With the holiday season officially underway, New Yorkers are setting up Christmas trees, stringing lights and lighting candles. The Firemen’s Association of the State of New York urges everyone to exercise caution and keep fire safety in mind when decorating for the holidays. When holiday lights and other decorations are not used properly, they can cause fires, injuries, and even death.

According to the National Fire Protection Association, U.S. fire departments responded to a yearly average of 200 home fires that started with Christmas trees between 2011 and 2015. These fires caused an average of six deaths, 16 injuries and $14.8 million in direct property damage annually. One of every 32 reported home fires that began with a Christmas tree resulted in a death, compared to an average of one death per 143 total reported home fires. Electrical distribution or lighting equipment was involved in two of every five of home Christmas tree fires.

FASNY encourages New Yorkers to choose decorations made with flame-resistant, flame-retardant or non-combustible materials. Look for these designations on the product’s packaging. Purchase lights and electrical decorations stamped with the name or symbol of an independent testing lab and always follow the manufacturer’s instructions for installation and maintenance. Also, do not overload extension cords, power strips and electrical outlets.

EAGLE SCOUTS — Three young men from Troop 93 of the Greater Niagara Frontier Council of the Onondaga District will have their Eagle Court of Honor at 6:30 p.m. Monday, Dec. 18, at the Clarence United Methodist Church, 10205 Greiner Road, Clarence.

Joseph Barthelme, a graduate of Clarence High School and currently a student at Alfred State University, replaced the roofs and trim on two dugouts at Sunset Park in Clarence. Despite the heavy rain and mornings of snow, he was able to replace the metal roofs and aluminum trim in time for the baseball season.

Grant Keppel, also a graduate of Clarence High School and now a student at Erie Community College, assisted with the construction of a split-rail log fence surrounding the family cemetery at the Hull Family Home and Farmstead in Lancaster.

David Constantine completed his Eagle project at Zion Lutheran Church in Clarence Center. He designed, constructed and installed an outdoor pulpit.

CLOTHES COLLECTION — M&T Bank will continue to collect warm clothes at its branches across Western New York for local families in need as part of its Gift of Warmth campaign.

Western New Yorkers can drop off donations of new mittens, gloves, scarves, hats and coats at their nearest M&T Bank branch. All of the warm clothing collected benefits children and families served by The Salvation Army of Buffalo.

Most branches are open weekdays from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. To find the nearest M&T Bank branch and its hours of operation, visit https://locations. mtb.com.

In addition to M&T branches, collection bins will also be located at several senior and health care facilities throughout the month of December.

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