Holiday Home Safety: Tips for Keeping Your Family Safe During this Holiday Season
We at Insurance Claim HQ want you and your family to enjoy the holidays while mitigating any risk associated with this festive time of year.
It's hard to believe, but the 2021 holiday season is right around the corner. It's time to start planning your family's events and festivities, including thinking about your big family meals, purchasing holiday gifts, and sending out holiday cards to keep in touch with all your friends and family that you may not have seen as much as you like throughout the year.
It's a joyous time to spend with those we love, to be sure. However, the holidays can also bring on some seasonal risks. Home fires tend to spike during the major November, December, and January holidays, and the reasons why are quite obvious 'Tis the season for cozy, candle-lit rooms, cooking large feasts for family and friends, and overwhelming our electrical system with a surplus of energy lighting our homes, Christmas trees, and yards.
Below are several major safety tips that can help keep your home safe and fire-free this holiday season.
Keeping the holidays merry and bright actually requires a lot of electricity. As such, it is important not to overwhelm your circuit breakers by plugging too much into one outlet. Consider these tips when lighting up the night with holiday cheer.
LED lights actually use much less electricity than traditional bulbs. Consider investing in this new technology to ease the stress on your electrical system.
Most circuits are only rated for somewhere between 15 and 20 amps. While decorating for the holidays, know what the rating is and when you are approaching about 80% of that circuit's rating, plug in your decor in another room. Additionally, don't plug in the holiday cheer in a room with large appliances, like a dishwasher or refrigerator
Getting a real Christmas tree is a holiday tradition for many Americans. Nothing quite compares to the scent of pine needles filling the air while trimming a gorgeous Douglas Fir.
However, Christmas trees can also be the source of home fires if they are not properly cared for while lighting up your living room. To make the most of your Christmas tree and avoid setting your entire home alight, follow these safety tips:
A dry tree is the last thing that you would want in the event of a home fire. They are highly flammable and can spread a fire quickly. A watered tree will burn less quickly.
You don't want to set your tree up around heat sources or any live flame, like fireplaces or candles. You also need to consider the wires surrounding your tree. Consider using a surge protector and always follow the directions of strings of lights lighting up your tree.
Nothing spells disaster like a dry tree lingering well after the holiday season. At this point, the tree is highly flammable and useless. Check with your local municipality on which days they are collecting Christmas trees and get rid of it after the holidays in January.
Lighting candles during Christmas and Hanukkah can truly make any home feel merry and bright, especially amid frightful weather outside. But it's more than that. Given that late December is the darkest time of the year, candles are a natural part of lighting up the home to provide a warm glow and warm ambiance.
But here's the risk: Christmas day has historically had a whopping 2.8 times more fires started from candles than the average day, according to the National Fire Protection Association. That's a 280% increase. While Christmas Day has the most candle fires, the next top four days for fires started by candles include New Year's Day, New Year's Eve, Thanksgiving, and Christmas Eve.
So, how do you keep your wicks lit and your home fire-free?
You wouldn't leave a pot on a gas stove unattended, so don't leave your candles unattended either. You should also avoid lighting candles in rooms where you sleep or in rooms where children will be playing unattended.
Place your candles on sturdy surfaces, avoiding wobbly or messy tables. Also avoid placing candles near any combustible material, like paper. In fact, you will want to ensure that your candle is at least 12 inches away from any flammable material.
There is no need to burn the candle all the way to the wick's end. In fact, doing so could increase the likelihood of a glass container exploding. Blow your candle out as soon as it gets too low.
Galen M Hair, Owner at Insurance Claim HQ, is a property insurance attorney who has helped over 800 families rebuild their homes and businesses. He has been rated a Super Lawyers Rising Star and voted one of the National Trial Lawyers Top 100. Click here to learn more about protecting your property from disaster.