It's Time To Deck The Halls

December 11, 2013

It’s Time To Deck The Halls

Three Simple Reminders In Decorating Your Home This Season

According to an article written by John R. Hall Jr at the National Fire Protection Association’s website, holiday decorations like Christmas lights are the main reason behind fire incidents during the holidays.


“Holiday lights and other decorative lighting with line voltage were involved in an estimated average of 160 home structure fires per year in this same period,” Hall said. The research found that these reported fires had caused an average of nine civilian deaths, 13 civilian injuries, and $9.0 million worth of property damages yearly. 17 percent of these incidents started with Christmas trees, while 69 percent of fire-involving incidents are caused by electrical malfunctions in decorative lights.

So how do we avoid these incidents without throwing away the idea of installing holiday lights? Here are a few tips to have disaster-free holidays:

Free the trees
Some people like their Christmas tree fresh and real. However, Christmas trees start an average of 260 fire-related incidents each year—and these figures might steer you away from getting real trees. However, Science Daily pointed out that buying artificial trees in favor of the real ones have real serious impact to the environment. In order to avoid these accidents without compromising the spirit of the holidays, retail chain Marks & Spencer had come up and started a safety program in 2007. The said movement encouraged everyone to purchase certified and tested products to lessen the possibility of future accidents. Also, part of the sales from their products would be used for the rehabilitation of Scottish woodlands.

Know your lights
Better Homes and Garden’s Christmas Ideas Editor Ann Blevins advised that not all Christmas lights can be used the same; in fact some decorative lights are specifically designed to be used in some portions of the house like the yard, roof, etc. “When it comes to holiday lights, there’s a type available for every nook and cranny of your house and yard. Whether you want blinking rope lights outlining windows or net lights blanketing bushes, wising up on your holiday light knowledge will help you get the most bang for your buck.”

Additionally, Home and DIY website Front Porch Ideas reminded that every homeowner should be wise in checking their Christmas lights as, “each receptacle used for your light must be ground fault circuit interrupter (GFCI) protected. See our Electrical Modifications Guide for more information about your electrical system.”

When reaching high places to hang Christmas decors, the National Safety Council suggested that homeowners should always use the proper step tools. They also listed the following reminders in decorating your house for the upcoming season:

·Read the labels first before you use materials that come in jars, cans and spray cans.
·Never place lighted candles near the tree, curtains, or other flammable materials.
·Avoid placing breakable tree ornaments or ones with small, detachable parts on lower branches where small children or pets can reach them.
·Do not hang popcorn chains and candy canes on the tree when small children are present. They may think that other tree ornaments are also edible.

These tips will help you to have a safe and wonderful holiday season. However, the most important part of this season is still having fun and spreading the love and joy to everyone.