Officials report two separate house fires during Christmas week

LEWISTON, ID - Two families from our region are homeless after Christmas week fires.

A representative from the Nez Perce County Sheriff's Office said a home in Kendrick was completely destroyed on Monday. In Elk River on Christmas morning, a woman's home was severely damaged by a fire also.

According to All-State Insurance Company, holiday fire claims jump by 40% in Idaho this time of year. That's about 11% more likely than other states across the country. Fire hazards that the insurance company sees the most this time of year include burning candles, frying turkeys and using artificial Christmas trees for decoration instead of real trees.

Avoid overloading outlets and leaving on decorative lights. And be sure to install new batteries in all smoke alarms in your home. Finally make sure you dispose of your real Christmas tree before it's gets too dry and brittle.