Christmas is almost here and we couldn’t be more excited, but in the midst of all our holiday cheer, it’s easy to let safety slip our minds. December and January are the peak months for accidental house fires, Christmas is one of the deadliest days of the year for drivers, ER visits spike, and to top it off, many find themselves suffering a cold and flu season afterward. Taking certain precautions can help protect your family from serious tragedy as well as even the inconvenience of a cold.
Be cautious with fire
One of the top reasons for housefires is unattended cooking. Our holidays tend to revolve around gathering together over delicious food, which means Christmas is one of the busiest days of the year for kitchens. Be sure there is someone in the kitchen at all times when food is being cooked, and especially when the stovetop is in use. Another culprit for home fires are unattended candles, so as much as we love our holiday scents, double check that your flame is away from anything it might catch fire and keep it on a stable surface away from children. Christmas trees with faulty lights, space heaters and fireplaces can also cause fires, so make sure you have a functional fire extinguisher and fresh batteries in your smoke detectors.
Be prepared when traveling
Many of us will be traveling during the holidays, and with busier roads, inclement weather, and more drunk drivers, it’s important to take all the precautions we can. The week leading up to your trip, be sure to check weather forecasts both locally and for your destination. If it’s a long road trip, you can check forecasts along your route and make sure you’re not caught off guard by a storm. Try to fit some flexibility into your schedule in case you get delayed or need to leave early to avoid bad weather. Pack extra water, food, and blankets in your vehicle in the event you get stranded. It goes without saying to not drive while under the influence, but unfortunately not everyone respects the safety of others. Avoid late night travel if you can, wear your seat belt, maintain a generous following distance to other vehicles, and don’t drive distracted!
Take care of your health
The holidays are right in peak cold & flu season and unfortunately many people come home from visiting family with symptoms. Thankfully, we don’t have to let that stop us from seeing loved ones, but we can still take some precautions to hopefully avoid getting sick. Keep your immune system boosted by maintaining a balanced diet and exercise routine. Taking vitamin C during the weeks leading up to the holidays can help keep your immune system strong as well. Most importantly, wash up and stay home if you’re sick.
Be cautious of falls
An emergency room visit when you’re supposed to be enjoying time with friends and family is no one’s idea of fun. Aside from cold & flu symptoms, a large portion of ER visits during the holidays are a result of falls, either by slipping on ice or falling from a height. It’s important to keep safety a priority when working in high spaces. Avoid balancing on furniture, and a ladder or step stool planted on a solid foundation when you need to reach high places. Sometimes ice is unavoidable, but one way to reduce your risk of a fall is to shovel and salt your home sidewalks, watch the ground for slick spots while you walk, and keep your hands out of your pockets to maximize your ability to balance.
We hope you have a wonderful and safe Christmas and New Year. May your celebrations be filled with joy and good health. We look forward to serving you in the new year!
Thank you Donica Wilkins for putting these holiday safety tips together for us!