Today’s post comes from guest author Catherine Stanton from Pasternack Tilker Ziegler Walsh Stanton & Romano. Be sure to take the time to enjoy and decorate for the holiday season. But also keep safety in mind. For example, if you have big plans to walk around your roof hanging holiday lights, watch for slick spots, even on nice days. And it’s probably not a spoiler to mention that the video below shows just how fast a Christmas tree and even the living room can go up in flames! The ideas below have more tips from the experts at the CPSC to stay safe while enjoying the holidays.
While many of you have probably already put up your tree, for those of you doing some last minute holiday decorating, we wanted to share a few tips from the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commisssion (CPSC) to help you make the season bright safely.
- When purchasing an artificial Christmas tree, check for a “fire resistant” label. While this doesn’t mean that the tree certainly won’t catch fire, it does mean the tree is resistant to burning.
- When purchasing a fresh Christmas tree, check for freshness. Fresh trees are green, with firm needles that won’t bend or break between your fingers. The bottom of a fresh tree is sticky with resin, and fresh trees shouldn’t lose many needles when tapped on the ground.
- Place your tree away from fireplaces, vents, and radiators.
- Heated rooms dry out fresh trees quickly, so make sure to keep the stand you’re your tree is in filled with water and check water levels daily.
- When purchasing holiday lights, make sure only to use lights purchased by a nationally recognized testing agency such as UL or ETL
- Use newer lights that have thicker wiring and safety fuses to prevent overheating.
- Check new or old lights for broken or cracked sockets, frayed or bare wires, or loose connections. Throw away damaged sets.
- Only use lights certified for outdoor use outside. Only plug them into a ground fault circuit interrupter safety outlet.
- Keep burning candles within site.
- Make sure to extinguish all candles before you go to sleep, leave the room, or leave the house.
- Keep lighted candles away from items that can catch fire and burn easily, such as Christmas trees, decorations, curtains, and furniture.
And of course, be sure to keep a fire extinguisher on hand! The video below covers all of these tips. For more information on holiday decorating safety, visit www.CPSC.gov. Have a safe and happy holiday!