The holidays are times for celebrating, and include lots of cooking,
home decorating, and entertaining. As you set out to accomplish
these things, please remember that more lives are lost during the
holiday season due to fires and accidents, than any other time of the
year. Of course, you should celebrate, but follow these safety tips to
ensure a more enjoyable and healthy holiday season.
When purchasing a tree, make sure it is fresh and green, not dry and
brittle. Pull and bend the needles between your fingers. If they easily
come apart from the branch, or break instead of bend, the tree is
neither fresh nor green.
Cut a few inches of the bark off the trunk exposing bare wood to
ensure maximum absorption of water to keep it fresh and green.
Keep the stand fill with water to prevent the tree from drying out, and
becoming a fire hazard.
Tuck the tree, away from heavy traffic areas, firmly into the stand so
it won’t topple over.
Decoration and Lighting
Make sure all materials used for decorating are flame resistant, and
non-combustible. Check the lights for frayed wires. Don’t use any
lights that appear to be damage.
Don’t use decorations that look like food or candy, to avoid the
temptations of young children placing then into their mouths. This tip
can prevent chocking. Also use good judgment when selecting
decorations that are breakable or those with small removable parts.
Hang them high out of reach of little hands.
Never place candles near the Christmas tree, or in any other place
where they can be knocked over.
Check your smoke alarm to make sure it is functioning properly. Now is
the time to test the batteries.
Don’t use to many electrical extension wires to overload the circuit,
and cause overheating. Get professional expert help to determine how
far out on the limb you can go without falling.
Avoid leaving lit cigarettes on ashtrays unattended, and never throw
undistinguished butts into the trash. Keep matches and lighters out of
sight and reach of children. These are two of the primary fire starters
especially during the holiday season.
When entertaining friends and family, stay in the kitchen when you are
cooking. Don’t leave the stove unattended.
Overeating raises cholesterol level and body weight, which increases
the risk of heart attack. Highly salted foods can elevate blood pressure.
Don’t eat hot food and drink cold beverages at the same time. The cold solidifies fats, making the stomach work harder. One can develop
stomach ache, which sometimes leads to indigestion.
Excessive drinking of alcohol and alcohol products increases the heart
rate, and causes palpitations. It can also lead to reckless driving, and
unsociable behavior. So drink in moderation, and apply common sense.
Before beginning holiday drinking, be sure to drink plenty of water.
Finish each cocktail with a glass of water to provide a balance that
keeps the body working well.
Mistletoe (Phoradendron Flavescens) is poisonous. It contains toxins,
which when ingested (leaves or berries), can cause stomach irritation.
Accidental ingestion may also result in increased heart rate, and high
blood pressure. Keep out of the reach of children, and animals.
Toys and Ornaments
Toys should not have sharp edges, sharp points, strings or cords
attached to cause harm to children. Neither should they be small
enough to be swallowed.
Match toys with the age of the children. Toys that are safe for
older children might not be necessarily safe younger ones.
Electric toys should be UL/FM approved.
I wish you a safe and healthy holiday season.