With the bustle of the holiday season surrounding us, it is important to remember that this time of year is ripe with accident risks. Below are 5 easy tips to stay safe this year and keep the festivities going:
1. Near to Us Once More: When visiting friends and family this year, it is important to remember that there will be many others on the road trying to do the same. Traffic is made worse this time of year with holiday travelers, bad weather, and rushing truckers making last-minute gift deliveries. Allow for extra time for this inevitable traffic.
2. Christmas Cheer: As we all rush from one holiday party to the next in treacherous winter weather, know that there are many on the road that engage in a dangerous combination of throttle and bottle. Be aware of your own alcohol intake at parties and stay alert for drivers who may have taken in a little too much holiday spirit. Make sure your friends are sober before they make a drive home for the night.
3. Holiday Light: 57% of all home fires are caused by defective heating equipment during the cold winter months that surround the holidays. The extra cold weather strains our heating systems, so it is important to check your furnace and clean your chimneys and chimney pipes. Christmas lights can also be a fire hazard. Be sure to only use outdoor-appropriate lights outdoors and turn the lights off when you leave your home. Dry Christmas trees are a fire waiting to happen. Keep your live tree properly watered and keep it away from heat sources and open flames.
4. Winter Wonderland: With snow and ice all around us, driveways and sidewalks can become a hazard. Spread sand or ice melt after shoveling snow on your steps and walkways to prevent slip and fall accidents. Electrical cords for holiday lighting should be cleared to the side.
5. Checking it Twice: Children are showered with holiday gifts this time of year, but ensure that your friends and family have given age-appropriate toys. Infants and toddlers should have toys that are not so small that they can be swallowed and free of sharp edges or hidden wires. Make sure that you check the manufacturers safety considerations before letting your child play with the toy.