With the hustle and bustle of the holidays, it seems that there’s never enough time to get everything done. It’s important, though, to make sure that safety doesn’t get left off the list: during the holiday season, fires cause a 34% greater dollar loss1 and holiday decorating injuries send more than 14,000 to the emergency room2. Commit a Minute to Safety this season fires with these quick, simple steps to help protect your family for safer holidays.
- Water, water, water your tree
Dry trees pose a fire risk – make a fresh cut on the base before putting your tree into a sturdy stand, and water frequently.
- Check your lights, check them twice
Inspect all of your electric lights and decorations for damage or wear. Cracked sockets, frayed or bare wires and loose connections may pose a fire or shock hazard.
- Plan your fire escape
Use the holidays as a good time to practice a fire escape plan with your loved ones. Identify at least two exits from every room in the house.
- Sleep safe: Install carbon monoxide alarms
Be sure that at least one carbon monoxide alarm is installed on each floor of your home, and always close to sleeping areas.
- Be flame aware
Always blow out unattended candles and teach your children to stay away from lit candles or fireplaces.
- Give wrapping paper a second life
Don’t burn used wrapping paper as it may cause intense flash fires. And throwing it out adds waste. Consider recycling or repurposing it instead.
- Know your lights and cords
Do not connect more than three miniature light strings together. Also, be sure to check the rating on your extension cords and do not plug in more than the recommended wattage.
- Steer your tree clear
Your tree should be positioned at least three feet away from fireplaces, radiators and other heat sources. It should also not block any doorways or exits.
- Decorate with a safe eye
Cords should not be run under carpets or tacked-up with metal nails or staples. Small decorations can be choking hazards so keep them out of the reach of toddlers.
- Look for UL
The UL Mark appears on products that have been tested for safety. Make sure to look for it to help keep your holidays safe and bright.