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Making this Holiday Season a Safe One

Posted: November 25, 2014

Gingerbread Man

Posted: November 25, 2014
Posted by: David O’Connell, President

The holidays are traditionally a time for friends and family to gather and celebrate. What we don’t always think of is that the holidays are also a time for increased safety risks. With more cooking, decorating and rituals that include open flames, candles and varied forms of lighting and decorating, the risk of injuries, house fires and burn injuries increases drastically during December.

In addition to keeping you warm this season, we’ve put together some tips to help avoid holiday hazards associated with holiday celebrations and gatherings.

Outdoor Decorations

  • Inspect holiday lights each year and discard any light sets that have frayed wires, bare spots or excessive kinking. All of these are signs that it is time for new light sets.
  • If you need to access your roof, eaves, or outdoor elevated portions of your home for decorating be sure to use a sturdy ladder on a stable surface and have someone to assist you. Should you have a fall, you’ll have someone to immediately come to your aid.
  • Keep walkways and steps clear of ice and snow as much as possible. This reduces the risk that guests who are not familiar with your home will slip and fall.
  • Be sure to have sufficient outdoor lighting as it gets dark earlier and earlier.

Indoor Decorations

  • If you have a live tree in your home, be sure it is well watered and remove it when it becomes dry.
  • Be sure that your tree is at least three feet away from indoor heat sources such as fireplaces.
  • Connect strings of lights to an extension cord before plugging the cord into an outlet.
  • Consider using battery-operated flameless candles.
  • Never leave lit candles unattended and make sure they are in secure holders placed out of the reach of children and pets.

Holiday Cooking

  • Cooking is the primary cause of home fires and burns during the holidays so be extra careful when preparing holiday meals and baking.
  • Turn all pot handles toward the back of the stove so they can’t be reached by children.
  • Roll up long sleeves when cooking.
  • Never leave a lit stove unattended; fires can start and spread rapidly.
  • Keep a pot lid or cookie sheet nearby to cover a pan should it catch fire.

Home Safety

  • Make sure your home is equipped with working smoke alarms, carbon monoxide detectors and fire extinguishers.
  • If you didn’t replace the batteries in your smoke or carbon monoxide detectors this year, now is the time to do so.
  • Have a family escape plan should the worst happen.

Gift Giving

  • Home safety equipment makes a great gift for loved ones. It shows you are concerned for their safety.
  • While candles are a classic addition to the holidays, flameless candles are a safer alternative and provide soft, lighting and holiday ambiance.

If you have any questions about making your home more comfortable this season, contact us today. Enjoy the holidays.