October 17th, 2019
The Consumer Product Safety Commission estimated that in 2016 there were 14,700 people hospitalized for injuries involving holiday lights, Christmas trees, and other decorations, with falls being the highest injuries at 34%!
Don’t let your Holiday lights trip you up this year. Here are a few safety tips that will keep you on your feet!
1. LADDERS, LADDERS, LADDERS: Since falls cause the greatest amount of injuries throughout the holidays, educate yourself on basic ladder safety. First, inspect your ladder for loose screws, hinges, or bolts before using. Always have a spotter with you when hanging Christmas lights both outside or inside. Fiberglass or wooden ladders are the safest ladders when working with Christmas lights, metal ladders could cause electric shock while handling lights. Lastly, don’t forget to use the right ladder height. Ladders should extend at least three feet past the edge of your roof.
2. INSPECT THE LIGHTS: First comes first, inspect the light strands for burned out bulbs, broken cords, loose connections, or frayed ends. If replacing bulbs or fuses, unplug all decorative lighting first. Newer lights have fused plugs which prevent sparks in case of a short circuit, so don’t hang onto old strands of lights. Newer lights=safer lights!
3. SECURE THE LIGHTS: Fasten the outdoor lights appropriately to trees, houses, or walls. This will protect your lights from wind damage and from blowing Christmas light strands loose, which could cause a protentional hazard. Do not staple or nail light strings onto your house or structure, it can cut through wire insulation and could start a fire. Always make sure your lights are plugged into circuits protected by GFCIs (Ground Fault Circuit Interrupters).
4. LED LIGHTS: Not only do LED lights help save on your energy bill (they use 75% less energy), but they are better quality and last longer. LED lights don’t get hot to the touch, so you don’t have to worry about kids or yourself getting burned. Be aware of overheated lights on Christmas trees or other decorations in the house in order to prevent fires.
5. THE NUMBER 3: If you want to stay on the safe side of strand wattage and circuit capacity, then you should never plug in more than three sets of Christmas lights into a single extension cord. This can cause major problems with overheating and can become a big hazard quickly.
6. EXTENSION CORDS: Yes, these are important too! Extension cords can sometimes overheat so check them from time to time. You also want to make sure that extension cords are safely and securely taped down onto the ground. Believe it or not, these can also cause injuries from people tripping over them.
7. SAFE STORAGE: Take down matters! Once the holiday season is over, ‘try’ to keep your lights in an organized untangled manner. You want to store them in a sealed container to prevent possible water damage that could occur during the off-season. Putting your lights in a sealed container will also keep them away from animals that often chew through cords and could actually save you from having to buy new lights next year.
8. TURN THEM OFF: Sleep soundly by unplugging your tree lights and any outdoor holiday lighting. You can also put your holiday lights on timers allowing you to set a time for when your lights go on and off every day! This way, no worries necessary!
Does this sound like too much added worry and stress during the most wonderful time of the year?! Call a professional holiday lighting service today!
Call 630-201-9627 today for a free quote!
It’s a Wonderful Light is Chicago’s premier holiday lighting installation service, servicing the Chicagoland area including the surrounding suburbs, Winnetka, Barrington, Glen Ellyn, Naperville, St. Charles, Wayne, and Geneva, and the surrounding suburbs.