Christmas Safety Tips
The holidays are exciting and fun, filled with the blessings of Christmas and hope for the New Year. For some families, celebrations turn to tragedy when people are careless with seasonal decorations, lighting and food.
The safety of you and your family is of the utmost importance. By taking simple precautions, you can greatly reduce your chances of accidents and mishaps. This article gives you holiday safety tips for a secure, hazard-free holiday season.
How many times have you purchased a new light set, extension cord or portable heater and put it to use without reading the instructions? It's a common scenario that most all of us are guilty of, but not without risk.
Manufacturers know what problems can occur with their products and that is one of the reasons why they include an instruction manual. They strive to make their directions as clear as possible to avoid abuse and any danger when the instructions are not followed accurately. Take the time to read through the manual to ensure that you've assembled the merchandise properly and followed the directions for use. It could save lives.
Along with the holidays come extension cords galore. This is risky when it comes to electrical shock and fire hazards. Whether it's for outdoor decorations or the indoor Christmas tree, cords are often misused. Check the voltage and make sure that the cords you use outside are certified for outdoor use.
Don't put anything on top of a cord and never use sharp objects such as nails, staples or tacks to secure the cord. Don't overload a circuit and make sure they're grounded. Keep all cords away from water or damp areas. The less cords you use, the safer your home will be. Always turn off lighted decorations and tree lights when left unattended.
If you prefer a real Christmas tree over an artificial one, you're not alone. Real trees do have their benefits but there are several things you need to consider when you go tree shopping.
Many trees offered at garden centers and discount store parking lots have been cut weeks before you buy them. You may not be aware of just how dry the needles on the trees are and the fire hazards that come along with them.
To guarantee a fresh tree, shop at a Christmas tree farm and cut your own. Put your tree in fresh water as soon as you get it home, away from any heating sources such as a fireplace or heater. Fresh trees drink plenty of water, so you should add some every day.
Decorations & Ornaments
Small decorations and ornaments can cause a choking hazard. If young children or pets will be celebrating the holidays in your home, decorate accordingly. When trimming the tree, put smaller ornaments out of reach, near the top. Avoid ornaments that look like candy such as fake candy canes, gumdrops and cookies. Choose tinsel that is labeled "lead-free" or opt not to use it at all.
Candles are beautiful and aromatic, but every time you light one, there's a hazard of fire and hot wax. Keep them out of the reach of children and never leave one unattended. Glitter can get into the eyes, nose or mouth. Glass decorations can break and cut skin or be swallowed. Use common sense and anticipate problems that may show up when your guests do.
Make your holiday season a safe one. Fall or early winter is the perfect time to change the batteries in your smoke detectors and it's easier to remember when it's routine.