A lot of variables come with the holiday season. People are traveling many miles, cooking elaborate meals for loved ones, ordering plenty of items off the internet, and decorating their homes. All of these various activities expose us, our home, and our families to a little risk. It’s nothing to be too scared or nervous about, but keeping these holiday safety tips at the forefront this season may help you and your loved ones stay safe. After all it is supposed to be “the most wonderful time of the year”, let’s be sure to keep it that way!
- When decorating your home for the holiday season, be sure to inspect electrical decorations for damage before use. Go through your Christmas lights and check the wires to be sure they’re not frayed. Loose or bare wires and loose connections could cause a serious shock that could result in a fire, especially when exposing them to a real Christmas tree.
- Be sure to keep your tree watered daily, as dry trees are a fire hazard in and of themselves. Better yet, opt for an artificial tree.
- Have something cooking in the kitchen? It’s best to stay in there to keep a close eye on it! Unattended cooking equipment is the leading cause of home cooking fires.
- Don’t plug too many things into one outlet. Overloaded electrical outlets are a common cause of holiday fires. Be sure to only plug one high wattage appliance into each outlet at a time.
- Be sure to unplug, turn off, and extinguish all holiday decorations before going to sleep or leaving the house. Did you know half of home fire deaths occur between the hours of 11 pm and 7 am? Be sure everything is turned off and blown out before going to sleep.
- When hanging lights and decorations, indoors or outdoors, use the correct ladder for the job to ensure proper safety.
- Do a yearly inspection of your furnace, as we’re heading into the colder months. It’s always best to have this performed by a qualified heating contractor to be sure the furnace is working properly. While you’re at it, have them clean or replace the furnace filter.
- Have you ordered gifts online that will be delivered to your home? Track these shipments, and try to be home when they arrive. During the holiday season, thieves scan the porches of neighborhoods for those prized packages. To avoid this, have someone home when the package is delivered. You may also have them delivered to work, or a friend or family member’s home if you know you will be unable to be home when the packages arrive.
- If you’re planning holiday travel, be sure your vehicle is well maintained and prepared for the miles ahead. All wheel drive and snow tires do wonders in the cold snowy months! Also, be sure your oil levels are adequate before hitting the road.
- Keeping these tips in mind is a great idea for a safe and happy holiday season for you and your loved ones. From all of us here at VAST, we wish you and your families a warm, joyous holiday season. We look forward to a prosperous 2019!