Christmas Safety Tips
We all love Christmas – a chance to enjoy festive trips out, shopping, time with family and friends and overindulging on festive food and drink. Admittedly, things may well be a little different this year, but we hope that you are all able to enjoy some time with your friends and family.
We would also like everyone to stay safe so have put together a collection of tips to help you enjoy the festivities without risk of accident or fire.
Almost all of us will have at least one tree in our home this year, with the tree being a focal point throughout the celebrations. Whether you opt for a real or artificial tree it is important to choose the right spot for it. Do not put your tree near any sort of heat source – it needs to be kept well away from any open fires, radiators, electric heaters and candles.
If you have chosen a real tree it is important to prevent it from drying out. You can help to keep your real tree moist by not bringing it inside too soon. If you want to buy it early, it can be kept outside until it is time to bring it into the house. Once it is inside you should ensure that it is kept moist, this can be done by topping up the water in your tree stand on a daily basis. We all know that dry things present more of a fire hazard, so keeping your tree watered in this way will prevent it from becoming dry and brittle.
Check your Christmas lights are working properly before putting them on the tree and make sure that they are switched off if you are leaving the house and at the end of each day. As well as lights your tree is likely to feature lots of bright and shiny decorations that may catch the eye of small children or pets. Decorations can be sharp and present a choking hazard so keep a watch on those who may be at risk.
There may well be greater demand than usual for electricity if you are decorating your home outside as well as inside. Check to ensure all wiring is in good condition and don’t overload sockets or extension leads. Take care to ensure that any additional leads or wires don’t create a trip hazard.
Getting ready for the big day ahead? If you are using hair straighteners or a hairdryer be sure it is switched off and unplugged when you’re done. Have teenagers in the house? Make sure they understand that phones and laptops should not be left on beds or other soft furnishings while they are charging.
Food plays a major role in our enjoyment of Christmas so it is likely that plenty of time will be spent in the kitchen over the festive period. If you are responsible for Christmas lunch, or cooking at any other time we strongly recommend you don’t have any alcohol to drink while or before cooking. Alcohol will impair your ability to respond should an accident happen as well as potentially affecting your balance and coordination.
If you are planning on settling down in front of the fire after lunch, make sure the chimney has been swept to reduce the risk of a chimney fire. Last and by no means least take the time, before any visitors arrive, to ensure that your smoke alarms are working, they could save your life should a fire break out.
It only remains for us to wish you a very Merry Christmas from all of us at Fire and Electrical Safety!