Holiday Safety Tips
Keeping tradition is what ensures the holiday season is special. We want to make sure that you are well equipped for decorating and preparing for the holidays in the safest ways possible.
1. Decorating your home for the holidays
- Leaving cords plugged in, plugging cords in improperly, or leaving lit candles unattended is a sure way to lead to dangerous mishaps. Having your lights set on an automatic timer and taking extra precautions when it comes to open flames, is a good way to avoid such mishaps.
- While putting up decorations, always use sturdy ladders - not a surface that is not meant for standing such as a table, chair, etc. This is said to be one of the top holiday safety tips.
- A live Christmas tree can pose a number of challenges if not cared for properly. Make sure to keep it watered so it doesn’t dry out and cause a fire hazard. Also, keep it displayed in a sturdy tree stand filled with water or wet sand. Such measures not only ensure the tree stays nice and green, it also won't fall if bumped by a wayward child or pet.
2. Lights, Fire, & Safety
Holidays create perfect opportunities for candle-lit dinners, hot cocoa by the fireplace, Christmas lights, and more. Fires can occur at any time, but the holidays pose a special risk. As stated above, improperly cared for plugs and candles pose a significant risk to your home. According to the US Fire Administration, 1 in 3 holiday fires is caused by electrical problems.
To Avoid a Fire Hazard
- Get rid of any lighting decor that has frayed wires
- Keep your tree watered
- Blow out candles when you leave any room
- Never place anything flammable in or around lights, candles, or a fireplace
This may seem like common sense, but it is important to stay intentionally aware of the hazards that arise during these memorable times.
Other important measures to be taken involving fire include:
- Don't burn wrapping paper, especially when it is colored
3. Traveling for the Holidays? Stay safe on the roads!
It is important to take the necessary precautions when driving in the winter. Prepare your car for winter by stocking up with an ice scraper, gloves, hats, and blankets in case of an emergency. Getting a good nights sleep before departing to avoid driving drowsy and to ensure you are extra attentive to the roads and your surroundings. Always plan to leave early so that there is no need to rush, and always take time to make sure everyone is properly buckled, no matter how long or short the distance.
4. Theft and Break-Ins:
Holiday travel can be the most special tradition throughout the season. However, it can sometimes come with hesitation and worry about what you are leaving behind. Take the normal measures of your everyday home security and add a few extra holiday safety tips to ensure your house stays safe while you’re away.
Home automation has made travel much easier on families since you can monitor everything from your thermostat to the door locks, lights, and beyond. Since thefts rise during the months of November and December, make sure to always plan to have someone look after your house while you’re gone or use video surveillance. One tip is to have a neighbor or friend shovel your walk for you if it snows. If that’s not possible, ask someone to make tire marks in your driveway so it appears as though someone is home.
5. Protecting Your Pets
Don't forget about your furry loved ones during the holidays! They can get into quite a bit of mischief when you are not paying attention. Tearing trash bags apart, climbing the Christmas trees, and tearing through your decorations are some of the ways your pets can drive you crazy. But the more serious thing to be aware of is your pets chewing on wires or consuming harmful plants. Many plants that are prevalent during the holidays can be poisonous to your pets. Poinsettia, Holly, Mistletoe, Lilies, and Daffodils can all be dangerous to your pets according to PetMD.
Overall, the Holidays are a special time of the year. By taking these extra precautions, we hope you are able to enjoy the time spent with loved ones even more. Happy Holidays!