Outdoor and In-door Holiday Safety Tips
A few things you can do with Christmas lights to make sure your holidays are beautiful and safe.
Are you one of those overachievers who puts up so many outdoor Christmas lights that jet planes think your house is a runway? Too much of a good thing can be a problem. Remember Chevy Chase’s house in National Lampoon’s “Christmas Vacation” In the movies decorating disasters are funny. At your house, safety is no laughing matter. Here are a few things you can do to make sure your holidays are beautiful and safe: First, never use indoor lights outside. Only use UL-approved exterior lights put up from below. Use a non-metallic ladder to prevent electric shocks. Stay off the roof to avoid falls and causing leaks. Suspend strands of lights from hangers rather than nailing or stapling them. The latter practice can cut into wires, creating shocks, shorts and hazards. And putting too many strands together can cause overheating, and cause a fire. Overloaded circuits can blow fuses and trip circuit-breakers. Just a little decorating common sense will make your home a beautiful and safe showplace this holiday season.
Holiday Ladder Safety
This week a lot of folks will drag out the ladder and decorations, lights and stapler to pursue lofty goals in the ‘spirit’ of the season. To entertain family, friends and passersby, those who perform this annual ritual often start ‘social-climbing’.” Carelessness can lead to another annual event — a trip to the emergency room. This unscheduled hospital call can be avoided by using ladders properly and moving carefully when off the ground. When using a stepladder, be sure legs are fully extended and hinges are locked into place. Be sure that feet are firmly planted on solid, level ground. Heed the warning on top that says, ‘this is not a step? It isn’t. With extension ladders set the bottom out one-fourth the ladder’s height from the wall. Make sure feet have firm support and, with both types, keep hips between side rails to maintain balance. Whether inside or out, when climbing to decorate, everything should stay up, including you.
Holiday Battery Check-Up!
It’s not unusual for a holiday get together that some things are beyond our control. Decorations may not turn out a perfectly as we would like. Wine or soda sills on the new carpet, and a guest may re-gift your gift from last year. Don’t sweat the small stuff…
According to Allstate Insurance and the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission here’s a tip to save you from the worst holiday mishap. FIRE
Add double check your smoke alarm batteries to the top of the holiday preparation list. It could save your life and home.
When your house is filled with guests, will you notice a fire on the stove or in your oven? How about the tipped-over candle on the mantle garland. So test all your smoke alarms to make sure their batteries work properly, and never leave candles unattended. Also, check your twinkly light strands for frayed wires, and resist the urge to plug too many strands into one outlet.
Christmas tree fires are more common than you think — they resulted in about $16 million in property loss last year, according to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission. Think carefully about where you put your décor. Keep a live tree far from heaters, where it will dry out and become more flammable. (Christmas trees can burn faster than newspaper, and it’s not a pretty sight.) Make sure your tree isn’t dead before you buy, and water it often once it’s home. If you go the artificial route, look for packaging that assures your tree is flame-resistant.
And don’ forget to have a FIRE EXTINGUISHER on hand.