10 Safety Tips for the Holidays

Looking for safety tips for the holidays? Keep reading!

Photo by Jacob Lund

There's no question that the holidays are a time of fun and merriment (and overeating!). But hand-in-hand with all the revelry are some inherent safety hazards. This doesn't mean that you have to be fearful all season long, of course. Just be mindful of a few safety tips to make sure things stay merry and bright:

1. Delicate ornaments on top, unbreakable ornaments on the bottom. If they're sharp, breakable or otherwise precious to you, keep those decorations up high and out of reach of young children and pets. Give the kids more durable ornaments to hang down lower.

2. Keep the tree well-watered. A dried-out Christmas tree can be a definite fire hazard. Check its water level every day. And when needles start falling out en masse, consider it time for disposal.

3. Don't overload electrical outlets. Even more than a dry tree, too many plugs in an electrical outlet can lead to house fires, or at least power outages. While perhaps necessary, try to keep extension cords to a minimum.

4. Keep an eye on any open flames. Candles, fireplaces and other open flames should never be left burning unattended. And make sure that flammable items are well out of the way.

5. Be mindful of a hot stove. With all the cooking and baking going on, the stove is likely to be on more often than normal. Teach young children not to touch, and older children how to work in the kitchen safely.

6. Get a designated driver. If you go out to a holiday gathering, either choose a DD, call a taxi, or set something up via a ride-sharing app. Please don't drink and drive.

7. Know who you're inviting/meeting at a party. When socializing with neighbors or other parents, it's smart knowing more about who you invite into your home and around your children. For that, try an online people search.

8. Only shop at reputable stores/websites. Scams and credit card theft abound this time of year. To protect your information, only shop from establishments you already trust.

9. Let the parking space go. Frayed nerves, bad weather and other inconsiderate drivers can lead to meltdowns, and even physical altercations. For your own peace of mind, as well as physical safety, just find a different parking spot.

10. Find ways to make sure you and your family can always stay in touch. Separate gatherings and shopping excursions necessarily split the family up at times. Until you're all back together under the same roof, make sure everyone has a cell phone or other way to communicate with each other.

By keeping these things in mind, you and your family are sure to have a safe--but still fun--holiday season.

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