On average, every year, fire departments respond to 210 structure fires caused by Christmas trees, according to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA). Don’t let your house be one of them. A safety advocate in the field of law for many years, Decof, Decof & Barry offers the following holiday safety tips to help your family have a happy and healthy start to the new year.
Christmas Tree Safety Tips:
- When choosing your tree, make sure an artificial tree is certified as fire retardant and that any live trees are fresh with green needles that do not fall when touched.
- Properly care for your tree by keeping it away from heat sources such as radiators and fireplaces, and out of doorways. Also, keep your tree fresh by making sure there is plenty of water in the stand at all times.
- Inspect your lights every year and replace any strands with broken/frayed cords or loose bulbs. Always turn the lights off before leaving the house or going to bed. If decorating outdoors, make sure your lights are labeled for outdoor use.
- Also, keep your pets and children in mind when decorating. Keep fragile ornaments and metal hooks up higher on the tree and out of reach.
- Lastly, keep the holiday season alive in your heart throughout the year, but not in your home. Take down Christmas trees when they begin dropping needles and place them outside.
Gift Giving Do’s and Don’ts for Good Boys and Girls:
- Think big for small kids, because small pieces can pose a choking risk or cause problems if swallowed.
- If a scooter, rollerblades, bike, or a ride-on toy is on the list, make sure a helmet is too! Also, make sure it gets worn.
- Focus on toys manufactured in the United States and Europe. They are subject to stricter safety standards and are less likely to contain toxic chemicals such as lead, chromium, and phthalates.
Lastly, take a tip from Rudolph and make sure your sleigh is prepared for winter weather and unexpected delays:
- Make sure your car, its battery, and its tires are winter weather ready.
- Make sure you not only have directions, but also maps in case of unexpected route changes due to construction, traffic, or road closings.
- Pack a winter safety kit (cell phone, charger, ice scraper, tow rope, jumper cables, sand or kitty litter for traction, blankets, flashlights, first aid kit, emergency flares, and matches).
DD&B wishes you and your family a safe and joyous holiday season.