Get a Hartford Courant subscription for less than 29 cents per day
CT Now

'Tis The Season

For me, the week after Thanksgiving can only mean one thing: It's time to get the Christmas tree.

None of this plastic/fake stuff either. One of the biggest perks of the holiday season is the smell of a live Christmas tree in the living room.

But bringing it home can be a challenge. Judging by the number of debris on the side of the highway, it seems a lot of people still don't know how to properly tie something down on top of their car.

Here's more evidence of that, and some tips, courtesy of

“Trees find their way on the road just often enough to notice [them] this time of year,” says Matt Rodewald, traffic and transportation reporter for WMAQ-TV in Chicago. Just yesterday, a Christmas tree blocked a lane on Chicago’s outbound Interstate 290, Rodewald reported on his Twitter account.

To make sure your Christmas tree makes it all the way home, we’ve come up with a few tips to help you safely transport your coniferous display of joy.

-Make sure to select a tree that will either fit inside your cargo area or, if you have a roof rack, on top of your roof properly.

-Place a tarp or blanket over the cargo area to protect the interior from loose needles. If you’re going to place the tree on the roof, place a tarp, plastic sheet or blanket between the tree and the rack to protect the roof from scratches.

-Try to get your Christmas tree netted before leaving the lot to make it more manageable.

-Make sure you have enough rope or cord to wrap around the tree and secure around the roof rack or to cargo hooks.

-Before leaving the lot, give the tree a good tug to make sure its secure.

-Drive slowly.

We don’t recommend tying a tree on your car’s roof without a roof rack. Try to avoid the highway, Rodewald says. We agree, especially if you’re not used to hauling heavy objects on your roof, as roof-bound objects affect your vehicle’s center of gravity and consequently emergency handling.

Copyright © 2016, CT Now