During the holiday season, there’s a lot on our minds: getting the shopping done, wrapping the gifts, decorating the house, getting the meal prepared, accommodating visiting relatives, and maybe shoveling snow. With all that there is to think about during this busy and joyous season, we sometimes risk forgetting about the safety of our homes. As you’re preparing for the holidays, please take some time to make sure your house is free of any hazards, so you may have the best and safest season possible.
In terms of decorating your home, odds are you’re going to be using lights. Be it a lot or a little, string lights or electric candles in the windows, always be sure to check the wires to see that they’re still in good condition. Even if the wires are in working order, never leave your house or go to bed without turning off all of your holiday lights. This will prevent any fires in case something happens to the wiring. If you use real candles, be sure to keep them away from anything in the house that can catch on fire, such as curtains or your tree.
When decorating your tree, be sure to keep any breakable ornaments away from young children. If any ornaments do break, especially if they’re made of glass, have others keep away until the pieces are all cleaned up.
For decorative lights on the outside of the house, always tightly wrap any connecting plugs with duct tape, in order to prevent water from getting inside them. Also, be sure to tape up any loose wires on your lawn and/or porch so you and others don’t trip over them.
When decorating the outside of your house, if you plan on hanging any wires in a high area, it would be safer if you had someone there to assist you, and always make sure the ladder is placed firmly against the house to prevent any falling.
When celebrating Hanukkah, if you place your menorah in the window, your best option is to use electric candles, so as to take care of the risk of curtains catching aflame. If you do end up using real candles and want to place the menorah in a window, make sure to remove any curtains that could get in the way.
When cooking, always make sure that young children stay an appropriate distance away from hot ovens, and always see that any pot/pan handles on the stove are not in their reach. Also, keep any sharp cooking and eating utensils out of the way of young children, in order to prevent injuries.
In case it has recently snowed, be sure to completely shovel and de-ice your walkways and driveways so any visiting friends and relatives don’t slip and get hurt.
If you keep all of this in mind, you will surely have a safe and happy holiday season.