Holiday Safety TipsNovember 7, 2014
The start of the annual holiday season means planning for large family gatherings, extensive travel arrangements and hectic shopping excursions. With all of the stressful preparations and frenzied movements that come with the holidays, many Americans lose sight of the importance of holiday safety precautions. Unfortunately, all it takes is one serious incident to turn a happy holiday into a harried trip to the emergency room. Whether you’re traveling to a holiday party or hosting your own festivities, here are some holiday safety tips to keep in mind.
Holiday Safety in the Home
Almost everyone knows the old saying about how most accidents occur in the home, and the holidays are no exception. A report from the Consumer Product Safety Commission showed that nearly 12,000 Americans visit the emergency room in November and December due to holiday-related decorating accidents. These incidents can range from falling off ladders, to cuts from broken glass ornaments, to muscle strains from lifting heavy decoration props. Intrepid decorators can take some holiday safety precautions by following the warning labels on ladders, lights and fragile items.
Holiday Safety and Fire Prevention
A major holiday safety concern revolves around fire-related incidents. Whether you choose to use the soft glow of candles for your holiday lighting, or if you prefer the color and convenience of electric lights, fire prevention should be a leading priority in your holiday safety plans. Christmas trees, wrapping paper, and loose decorations can all pose fire hazards. The best holiday safety advice to prevent fires is to keep such hazards away from open flames, such as candles and fireplaces. Worn or frayed holiday lights can also pose a significant fire hazard, so check the cords and sockets for signs of wear and replace them as needed.
Holiday Safety on the Road
Long drives, bad weather and fewer hours of daylight can lead to dangerous driving conditions. Add in the heavy traffic and stress of the season, and holiday safety on the road becomes a major concern. Before taking that hours-long trip to visit friends and relatives, get a holiday safety inspection done on your vehicle. Even small procedures like engine tune-ups, tire pressure checks, and headlight replacements can increase your chances of getting over the river, through the woods, and back home safely.
Holiday Safety and Alcohol
For those that prefer holiday “spirits” of the distilled variety, the urge to celebrate the season can lead to overindulgence. Alcohol-related traffic accidents have been a holiday safety issue for decades. The National Safety Council released a report that showed that 35 percent of all traffic fatalities that occurred over the four-day Thanksgiving weekend were alcohol-related. The same report showed that 34 percent of the Christmas holiday traffic fatalities and 43 percent of the New Year’s holiday traffic deaths were alcohol-related.
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