The holidays are a time to slow down and enjoy life with family and friends. It is important to remember to stay safe both inside and outside when enjoying the festivities. One of the biggest concerns over the holidays is fire safety.
A barrier to protect children and pets from accessing gas and wood-burning fireplaces is recommended when in use and during the cool-down period. Also, never burn gift wraps and ribbons, boxes, cartons, or other types of packaging in the fireplace, as they can create toxic smoke and damaged chimneys.
Ovens and Elements
If you are hosting or attending a particularly festive party, it may be worth having the host cook ahead of time to prevent any injuries related to gas or electric stoves. Clutter should be reduced on cooking services, and the party should ideally happen away from the stove.
If using any space heater, clear a minimum of 1 metre around it. Also, ensure that children do not go near the heater. If you are using an old unit, you may want to consider replacing it with a newer one with better safety features, including automatic shut-off.
Christmas Trees and Lights
If you plan to have a tree in your home for the holidays, ensure it stays well-watered and far away from any flame sources to reduce the chance of fire. In terms of power, be sure not to overload electrical outlets. It can be tempting to plug in multiple types of lights and possibly heaters inside but avoid the temptation.
If necessary, switch to energy-saving LED lights with vastly reduced power requirements compared to traditional incandescent bulbs for holiday lights. Also, do not string different types of lights together in series, as this can increase hazards, including melting or fire.
Make sure to fully replace any faulty bulbs to reduce the chances of a short circuit. Ensure that any plugs are fully pushed into the outlet and secure to reduce the chance of electrocution.
If you choose to use candles, make sure they are on a sturdy surface with some dish or holder underneath in case of tipping. Put candles out before going to sleep or leaving home.
Have a Safe Holiday Season
These are just a few ideas for staying safe during the holidays. Feel free to share any tips you may have in the comments on our blog or Facebook page.