Holiday Safety Tips

13 December 2019



Holidays should be a time of fun and festivities, however during every holiday season, tragedies happen.  The holiday safety tips shown below will protect your holidays and lessen the chance of adversity.

Trees

  • When purchasing an artificial tree, look for the label “Fire Resistant.”
  • Check for freshness, when purchasing a live tree.  A fresh tree is green and needles are hard to pull from branches.  Needles do not break, when bent between your fingers. The trunk of a fresh tree is sticky with resin.. 
  • When setting up a tree at home, place it away from fireplaces, radiators or portable heaters. 
  • Place the tree out of the way of traffic and do not block doorways. Cut a few inches off the trunk of your tree to expose the fresh wood.  This allows for better water absorption and will help keep your tree from drying out and becoming a fire hazard.
  • Be sure to keep live tree stand filled with water, heated rooms can dry live trees out rapidly. 

Lights

  • Inspect all tree lights, before hanging them on your tree. Look for frayed wires, broken sockets or loose connections.  Make sure all bulbs work.  Some cords are safe to use with burned out bulbs.  Discard lights with frayed wires, broken sockets or missing connectors.  If not sure if safe to use with burned out bulbs, discard and replace. 
  • Never use electric lights on a metallic tree. The tree can become charged with electricity from faulty lights, and a person touching a branch could be electrocuted.
  • Before using lights outdoors, check labels to be sure they have been certified for outdoor use. To hold lights in place, string them through hooks or insulated staples, not nails or tacks.  Never pull or tug lights to remove them. Plug all outdoor electric decorations into circuits with ground fault circuit interrupters to avoid potential shocks.
  • Turn off all lights when you go to bed or leave the house. The lights could short out and start a fire.
  • ALWAYS check your ladder and your surroundings when putting up outdoor decorations.

Decorations

  • Use only non-combustible or flame-resistant materials to trim a tree.

Fireplaces

  • Before lighting any fire, remove all decorations from fireplace area. 
  • Do not burn gift wrap paper in the fireplace. A flash fire may result as wrappings ignite suddenly and burn intensely.

Shopping

  • Shop with a friend, if possible, there is safety in numbers. 
  • Never leave your purse in a shopping cart or on a counter while you pay for your purchases. When using public restrooms, use caution — try to avoid putting your purse on hooks or door handles. These places give others easy access to your bags. 
  • Plan your shopping/errands so you load your trunk only when you are ready leave.  Load your trunk when you leave a location .

Traveling

  • Check road conditions before leaving, especially when traveling out-of-state.
  • Inform a family member where you will be and when to expect you back; give them your route if they don’t know it.
  • When driving, keep doors locked and windows rolled up at all times.
  • Maintain at least half a tank of fuel, and keep vehicle in good repair.
  • Keep spare fuses, basic first aid kit, and an emergency kit in your vehicle at all times.
  • If you feel yourself getting tired, pull over and take a break (at a safe location where there are other people and light).
  • Keep your wallet, purse, and any other valuables on your person or otherwise out of sight, NOT on the seat next to you.