(WHTM) — The National Fire Protection Association is warning people about one of the biggest fire hazards of the new year.

According to the NFPA, approximately 30% of all house fires in Jan. involve Christmas trees. Natural trees dry out over time, making them more flammable and dangerous. To safely get rid of a Christmas tree, the NFPA recommends safely unplugging lights from the plug, not the wire, inspecting and throwing out light wires, wrapping lights in a plastic bag or around cardboard, and storing them in a dry place.

“As much as we enjoy the look and feel of Christmas trees in our homes, they’re large combustible items that have the potential to result in serious fires,” NFPA Vice President of Outreach and Advocacy, Lorraine Carli said. “The longer Christmas trees remain in homes, the longer they present a risk.”

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It is also recommended that you should take your tree to be recycled if possible and left in a garage or outside.