As the holidays approach, Northwest Fire is reminding everyone of some very basic, but very important safety tips to keep their holiday season safe and happy.
Northwest Fire has seen several significant falls as homeowners attempt to hang holiday lights. Following these tips, a home can be decorated safely:
• Always work in pairs, a buddy system ensures someone is there to hold and stabilize ladders, pass lights and call for help in the event of an emergency
• Never out climb or out reach the ladder you are using
• Ensure ladders are on solid, flat ground to prevent the ladder from tipping over while in use.
• Never overuse or overload an electrical outlet. Never use outlet expanders that allow 4-6 plugs to run off of one outlet.
• Only use approved extension cords that have built in circuit breakers. These cords are also called 6:1 or 6 in 1 extension cords with the “red” switch that will trip in the event of a surge or short.
• Only use indoor lights for inside use and outdoor lights outside. Make sure all lights have the UL safety ID
• Never place electrical cords under rugs or in heavy traffic areas where they can become trip hazards
• Check cords for cracks, frays or wear and tear which can cause an electric short and possible fire
Christmas trees are another serious threat to holiday safety. An eight-foot pine can burn completely in just 27 seconds and create tremendous heat. Some safety tips to remember are:
• Place your tree away from heat sources and open flames.
• Check the lights before placing them on the tree. Look for loose sockets or broken and
• Frayed wires.
• Keep water in tree base container and check it often.
• Turn lights off when you leave your home unattended.
• Never drink and Drive
• Plan ahead and choose a Designated Driver
• Provide outside ashtrays for smokers
• Never leave candles burning when not at home and extinguish them before going to bed.
• Secure prescription medications when visiting friends or families with kids or if they are visiting you.
• Use spark arresters and ensure Flues are open when using fireplaces
• Never hang combustibles (stockings) near the fireplace
• Ensure your home has working smoke and carbon monoxide detectors. Ensure fresh batteries are installed.
• Never use an oven, stove top or BBQ as a heating source for your home