- By David Decker, 78th Air Base Wing Occupational Safety chief
- Robins Public Affairs
Robins AIR FORCE BASE, Ga. --
The holiday season is here so let’s make sure to decorate safely.
Decorating is one of the best ways to get in the holiday mood but each year accidents and injuries occur due to improper installation and usage of holiday decorations.
When it’s time to break out the decorations, make sure to check all holiday light cords to ensure they aren’t frayed or broken. Don’t string too many strands of lights together – no more than three per extension cord.
At night when it’s time for bed or when leaving the house, make sure to turn off the holiday lights.
Ensure outside decorations are for outdoor use and fasten lights securely to your home or trees.
If using hooks or nails outside, make sure they are insulated to avoid an electrocution or fire hazard.
The tree purchase can lead to safety concerns depending on if you use an artificial versus a live tree. If buying an artificial tree, look for the fire-resistant label.
When putting it up, keep it away from fireplaces, radiators and other sources of heat. Never use electric lights on metallic trees.
Families that prefer to get a live tree, make sure it’s fresh and keep it watered. To test if the tree is fresh, bend the needles up and down to make sure no needles fall off.
Remember if hanging stockings or other decorations on the mantel above the fireplace, don’t light the fire.
Check the labels of older decorations. Some older tinsel is lead-based. If using angel hair, wear gloves to avoid irritation. Avoid breathing in artificial snow.
If using a ladder, be extra careful. Make sure to have good, stable placement and wear shoes that allow for good traction.
An often overlooked hazard are poisonous plants utilized as holiday decorations.
Ensure to keep mistletoe, holly berries, poinsettias, Jerusalem cherry and amaryllis away from children and pets.
Just take a few minutes to think Safety to ensure a joyous holiday season.