Happy Holiday’s!!! Safety Dad is here to help keep it that way. Each year hospital emergency rooms treat about 8,700 people for injuries, such as falls; cuts and shocks related to holiday lights, decorations and Christmas trees. Christmas trees are involved in about 400 fires annually, resulting in 20 deaths, countless injuries and about 15 million in property loss and damage. House fires increase dramatically during the months of December and January. They facts speak loudly and clearly. Safety Dad is well aware of the imported safety risks that await you during the holiday season. These simple but easy to follow tips will help make this holiday a safer and happier time for both kids and parents alike.
* Make sure your tree is freshly cut and not dried out. Shake the tree a few times, if the needles fall out than your tree is too dry. Bend the needles as well. If they break in half, it is too dry.
* Make sure you’re the tree stand has water up to it’s base. A well watered tree will be less likely to dry out
Trees should never be near direct heat sources (heater, fireplace) this direct heat will accelerate the drying process and creates a fire hazard
* Throw your tree out as soon as it becomes too dry
* Cut the lower branches off the tree as these branches can poke a child in the eye causing injury or worse
* Make sure there are no lit candles near the tree
* All artificial trees should be labeled fire resistant
* Place your tree out of people traffic and do not block doorways
* Fasten all outdoor lights to protect from wind damage and potential fire and use GFI circuit interrupters to prevent shocking
*It is important not to overload sockets with holiday lights. Overloading outlets can create a short and start a fire
*Do not string lights on the lower branches as they can become a strangulation hazard
*When using metallic or artificial trees, do not string lights across. The metal can attract electrical currents and cause shocking
*Do not use lights with frayed or cracked wires
*Make sure that all lights are turned off when going to bed or when leaving the house. Trees make look pretty at night but should be shut off.
*Use only lights approved by a recognized testing laboratory
*Sharp and breakable items should be removed from the lower branches.
*Remove trimmings that resemble candy-This will avoid children trying to eat and swallow them
CANDLES - Candles account for over 10.000 fires each year (CPSC)
*Candles that are tall and thin are more likely to tip over and fall to the ground. Use smaller, wider candles that are very easy to tip
*Candles should never be lit near trees
*Keep candles away from children. Candles should be on high shelves at all times
*Never go to bed with candles still lit.
*Toys with small removable parts should be separated from children. Dolls and other small toys have many small removable parts that can become a choking hazard.
*Lead poisoning has become an issue with many toys this year. Keep track of recalled toys
*Most holiday plants look pretty and make for a festive atmosphere but certain plants pose hazards to children that should be avoided. Though not deadly, these plants can cause sickness that can ruin any holiday for a child.
*Poinsettias-Can cause stomachache and irritation around the mouth area.
*Mistletoe-The berries on the plants can cause mild cramps, vomiting and/or diarrhea
*Holly-As with Mistletoe, the berries of this festive plant can cause vomiting, diarrhea and cramps. It is also important to watch the sharp leaves of this plant that can cut the inside of a childs mouth and throat if swallowed.
Now that you've got the tips to keep you and your children safe this holiday season, have a great time and enjoy this wonderful time of year. For more information about how you can protect your family, visit Baby-Safe at http://www.babysafeamerica.com/.