The winter holiday season is a festive and eventful time of year that traditionally includes notable increases in lights, colorful decorations, celebrations, family gatherings. Thus, an increase in the usage of electricals and potential safety hazards.
Here are ten easy tips for holiday electrical related safety:
Cracked or damaged sockets, loose or bare wires, and loose connections may cause a serious shock or start a fire.
Overloaded electrical outlets and faulty wires are a common cause of holiday fires. Avoid overloading outlets and plug only one high-wattage into each outlet at a time.
More than three strands may not only blow a fuse, but can also cause a fire.
Dry trees are a serious fire hazard.
Candles start almost half of home decoration fires (NFPA).
A heat sources that was too close to the decoration was a factor in half of home fires that began with decorations (NFPA).
To avoid shock or fire hazards, cords should never be pinched by furniture, forced into small spaces such as doors and windows, placed under rugs, located near heat sources, or attached by nails or staples.
Decorations not bearing a label from an independent testing laboratory such as Underwriters Laboratories (UL), Canadian Standards Association (CSA), or Intertek (ETL) have not been tested for safety and could be hazardous.
Unattended cooking equipment is the leading cause of home cooking fires (NFPA).
Unattended candles are the cause of one in five home candle fires. Half of home fire deaths occur between the hours of 11pm and 7am (NFPA).