Top Safety Tips For Holiday Decorating
The holidays – oh yes, the perfect time to spend with loved ones relaxing and having fun. After all, after a hectic year, everyone could use some time to clear their heads, take a break and have a good time with family. For this reason, many people go to great lengths to ornate their homes with all kinds of decorations.
Unfortunately, while decorations are fantastic and bring life to the holiday season, they also come with a bit of danger. With all the exhilaration going around, it’s easy to get lost in the festivities, and while you’re engrossed in decorations, safety may be the last thing to cross your mind.
A Look At Holiday-Related Injuries
The truth is that a lot could go wrong when putting up decorations without proper safety techniques. Candles, ornaments, Christmas trees, linens, holiday lights, electric wreaths and other items used for holiday decorations could spoil an otherwise fun holiday if left unchecked. In fact, according to the US CPSC (Consumer Product Safety Commission), millions of Americans are affected by holiday-related catastrophes.
According to the data collected by the CSPC, there were 18,000 emergency room visits from November 2017 to January 2017 that were as a result of holiday decoration injuries. 30% of these injuries were attributed to falls, 14% to lacerations and 18% were related to sprains and strains due to heavy lifting.
With such scary numbers in play, it goes to show just how important it is to prioritize safety when decorating your house. But holiday decorations are not all doom and gloom; the good news is that you can choose to get proactive and keep your loved ones safe during the holidays.
Take a minute or two to take a look at the following safety tips for holiday decorations and save yourself from a lot of trouble during this Christmas season:
Tip #1. Keep Tress Away From Heat Sources
Whether you’re going to purchase a real or artificial tree, it’s imperative that you keep them away from heat sources. That means not having radiators, fireplaces or vents anywhere near your trees.
If you choose to go with artificial trees, pick a tree that is labeled ‘fire resistant.’ This means that the tree won’t catch fire easily. On the other hand, if you choose to go with live trees for Christmas, make sure that they are fresh. Freshly cut pine trees have sticky sap and branches are resilient and don’t snap when pulled.
After you’ve picked the trees, place them as far away from heat sources as possible because it only takes a small spark to put a live pine tree on fire. Also, when placing the trees, make sure that they don’t block exits.
Tip #2. Keep The Trees Hydrated
If you insist on getting a live tree, make sure you keep it hydrated. And that means watering it regularly especially if you’re going to have it throughout the holiday season. The main reason why you should hydrate your tree is that dried pine catches fire much faster as compared to wet pine trees and they could go in flames any time. Pu the trunk of your tree in a basin full of water to keep in hydrated.
Tip #3. Work In Pairs
Teamwork can make a world of difference when decorating your house for the holiday season. When you work with a partner, not only do you get things done much faster, but you also reduce the risk of holiday-related injuries. So, whether you’ve moving heavy furniture around the house to create room for the tree or you’re putting up decorations and putting lights outside with a ladder, have someone to help you. It can be tempting to want to do everything yourself but working as a team, especially when using a ladder can prevent falls.
Tip #4. Decorate With LED Lights
Make sure to keep lights away from flammable items. Also, lights are not a one-size-fits-all so don’t use outdoor lights inside your home. When setting up lights, check for weak connections, frayed wires, old sockets, broken bulbs or anything that could compromise the lights.
When choosing lights for decorations, you might want to go with LED lights because they not only keep the bill down but also don’t get hot, which reduces the risk of fire.
Tip #5. Make Use Of Shatterproof Ornaments
Glass ornaments look amazing, but should they break, they can be quite dangerous, especially if you have kids and pets around. One piece of broken glass is enough to cause a dreadful laceration. So, it makes sense to choose to go with shatterproof ornaments such as plastic ornaments. But if you still think you need glass ornaments, place the high from the reach of curious pets and children and don’t forget to have someone hold the ladder for you.
Tip #6. Power Strip Safety
One of the best ways of preventing electrical fires during the holiday season is to ensure the proper use of power strips. Make sure that power strips are not daisy-chained and don’t overload them with too many electrical devices. Place your extension cords away from people somewhere close to the wall to prevent trip related accidents.
Tip #7. Secure Your Candles
Candles are undoubtedly a favorite during this time of year. Sadly, they are also notorious fire hazards. You can use LED candles, and in case you use the real ones, place them on a sturdy, heat-resistant base and away from the reach of children. You’ll also want to keep an eye on you candles at all times and place them far away from items that can catch fire.
Your holiday wish list most certainly does not include a visit to the emergency room. So just remember to be safe and stick to the tips mentioned above when decorating your house this holiday season.