There is much to enjoy about the holiday season, whether it be Thanksgiving traditions or the “fine art” of holiday decorations. Unfortunately, on top of the stress that the holidays bring to many people, there are also injuries, accidents, and various safety concerns that accompany what should be a more joyous time. Below are some helpful, fun tips we found from various sources that should keep you safer over the holidays!
Frying a turkey? While fried turkeys are delicious, there are thousands of fires as well as many deaths and injuries each year due to turkey fryer fires. So … before you set up your turkey fryer this Thanksgiving, remember these safety tips.
- Stay Away from The House: Set up the turkey fryer more than 10 feet away from your home and keep children and pets away. Never leave it unattended.
- Find Flat Ground: The oil must be even and steady at all times to ensure safety. Place the fryer on a flat, level surface and carefully gauge the amount of oil needed.
- Use a Thawed and Dry Turkey: Make sure your Thanksgiving turkey is completely thawed and dry. Extra water will cause the oil to bubble furiously and spill over. If oil spills from the fryer onto the burner, it can cause a fire.
- Monitor the Temp: Use caution when touching the turkey fryer. The lid and handle can become very hot and could cause burns. Also, be sure to keep track of the oil’s temperature as many fryers do not have their own thermostats.
- Be Prepared: Have a fire extinguisher (multipurpose, dry-powder) ready at all times in the event that the oil ignites.
Putting up holiday decorations? According to the US Consumer Product Safety Commission, there are over 15,000 injuries each year related to holiday decorations, with falls, cuts and back strains topping the list of injuries. Here are some tips to keep in mind as you deck out your home.
- Keep live trees away from heat sources: Place your tree away from fireplaces and heaters, and keep a fire extinguisher near your tree. Live trees are highly flammable, due to needles and sap.
- Hydrate your tree: A dried-out tree can catch fire faster than one that has been properly watered. Check the water level every other day to ensure proper hydration. Starting with a green tree is one way to keep it from drying out so quickly.
- Fake it: If you buy an artificial tree, make sure it’s labeled “fire resistant.” Fire-resistant trees are less susceptible to catching fire.
- Don’t burn wrapping paper in the fireplace: Paper can catch fire very quickly and can cause flash fires. Instead, recycle (or better yet, reuse!) your wrapping paper.
- Work as a team: When stringing lights and decorations above your normal reach, make sure you use a proper ladder with someone supporting the base.
- Double-check your lights for safety: Replace any lights with frayed wires, broken sockets, and loose connections.
- Power down before you turn in: Turn off all lights when you go to bed and before leaving the house to avoid a short that could start an electrical fire.
- Prevent electrical cord damage: Don’t mount lights in a way that might damage the cords, and avoid using nails or tacks. Use hooks or insulated staples instead.
- Secure candles: Keep candles on a sturdy base to prevent tipping. Never leave a lit candle unattended.
- Use unbreakable ornaments: If you have fragile ornament, place them out of reach from pets and kids.
- Skip the fake food: Avoid decorations that look like candy or food if you have young children — or pets — in the house.
- Beware of poisonous plants: While festive, poinsettias are poisonous when eaten, so keep them out of reach of kids and pets.
Have a safe and joyous holiday season!