The holiday season is a time to get together with family and friends to celebrate the joy and happiness you share with one another. It’s a time to honor your family’s traditions, enjoy hearty meals, and give gifts to the people we love. This often means we do a lot of traveling, cooking, shopping, and decorating—way more than the rest of the year, anyway!
The more we decorate, shop, cook, and travel, however, the more opportunities we encounter for hazards at home, in the office, and on the road. Many safety organizations have found that the time between Thanksgiving and New Year’s is when most accidents happen all year.
Whether you plan on throwing a party, or simply attending one, if you know the potential risks you may face, and how to avoid theft, injury, and property damage, you’re bound to have a happier and healthier holiday season.
Holiday Fire Safety
We’ve already discussed the heightened risks of fires when we talked about Christmas tree fires and deep frying turkeys, but it’s important to drive the point of holiday fire safety home. The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) reports that most home fires and fire deaths occur between December and February every year. More house fires are caused during cooking accidents than anything else, but holiday decorations are high up on the list of house fire causes, too.
The best way to avoid holiday decoration fires is to use non-flammable or flame-retardant decorations. If you’re going to have a fresh Christmas tree in your home this year, be sure to always have water in the stand so it doesn’t dry out—a dry Christmas tree is perfect kindling for a house fire. If you’re going to use an artificial tree, be sure it’s a good quality. Whichever type of tree you choose, only use UL-listed lights. This means that they’ve been tested by a recognized, independent safety-testing agency. Don’t leave a fresh tree up for more than four weeks, no matter how well you water it. If you’re using a menorah during your holiday celebrations, try using dripless candles. Also be sure that you don’t have any decorations or trees near candles, fireplaces, or heaters. Last, but certainly not least, make sure there’s always someone looking after an open flame or stove; never leave these heat sources unattended.
Stay tuned for more holiday safety tips!