Hauling a tree home for the holidays? Chances are you're doing it wrong.

You would think that in this outdoor-loving state drivers would be better informed on how to haul a Christmas tree. Whether you buy one from a lot, the store, or cut your own, properly hauling your tree home is more important than you might think. Don't feel bad, most don't know how to properly haul one home.

According to AAA Colorado, millions of Americans will tie their Christmas trees to their vehicles but most are doing it incorrectly. A recent AAA survey showed some surprising tree mishaps that lead to actual damage and injuries. In most of those situations, they didn't secure the tree properly to their vehicles. Here are some helpful tips from Cars.com...

 

  • Get your Christmas tree netted before leaving the lot to make it more manageable. If it's going on the roof, the trunk should be facing front. Both will help reduce wind damage to the foliage. 
  • 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. Also, ensure that you have enough rope or cord to wrap around the tree and secure it to the roof rack or to cargo hooks.
  • 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.
  • If you are transporting a tree in the back of a pickup truck, keep in mind that there could be hot spots in the bed—from the exhaust pipe, for example. This can damage the tree's foliage, so put something under it like an old blanket.
  • Before leaving the lot, give the tree a good tug to make sure it's secure.
  • Drive slowly and avoid the highway, especially if you're not used to hauling heavy objects on your roof. They affect your vehicle's center of gravity and consequently emergency handling. 
  • Use a quality rope. An old piece of twine you found in the garage may not hold up.
  • Know your knots. You don't have to be a Boy Scout but do know how to tie a bowline and a half hitch. They are the most helpful in securing stuff including Christmas trees.     

If your tree falls off in Colorado you could get slapped with a fine. If it falls off and causes an injury, you could face 90 days in jail!

Credit: Fox31News