Safety First: Holiday Decorating Tips for Arizona Families

Holiday Decorating Tips for Arizona Families
The holidays have arrived, and many Arizona families have begun decorating their homes for Christmas, Kwanzaa, and the coming new year. It’s a celebratory time of year, sometimes involving beautiful and intricate decorations. But for thousands of people each year in December, holiday decorations cause personal injuries, some as minor as a paper cut from a piece of wrapping paper and others as severe as a brain damage or death stemming from a fall from a ladder.

Keep yourself and your loved ones happy and healthy this holiday season with this list of potentially hazardous decorations and valuable holiday decorating tips from the personal injury lawyers at Lerner and Rowe Injury Attorneys.

Holiday Decorating Tips: Preventing Injury
According to a report by the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), 14,800 people were treated in emergency rooms due to holiday decorating-related injuries in 2019. That averaged out to around 160 injuries each day during the holiday season! Common injuries seen in emergency departments across the country were falls (38%), lacerations (14%), and strains or sprains (18%).

Luckily, many holiday decorating injuries are preventable simply by taking a few extra precautionary measures. Let’s talk about common decorating hazards and how to avoid them with safety-focused holiday decorating tips.

Candle Fires
Candles are an important part of many religious and cultural traditions. But open flames can prove to be particularly dangerous this time of year, requiring additional safety precautions. 
If you’re lighting a kinara, always be sure to place it on a stable, level, and nonflammable surface. Ensure that the candles are secure in their holder, and keep the kinara away from flammable objects like curtains, blinds, plants, and other decorations. Never leave a lit kinara unattended.

Tree Fires
Christmas trees and Hanukkah bushes can be hazardous in the home if you aren’t careful. Follow these holiday decorating tips from the National Fire Protection Association to prevent tree fires.

Never assume that your artificial tree is fire-resistant. When purchasing a fake tree, check the product label or tag for the words “fire resistant” or “flame retardant”. While a fire-resistant tree is no guarantee of complete safety, it can reduce the chances of an accidental fire resulting in serious burn injuries.

For those that love the smell and feel of having a freshly cut tree, keeping your home safe will require a little more work. When buying a live tree, check for freshness at the tree lot. You can do this by bending one of its needles between your fingers. 

A fresh tree’s needles should be green and should not break when bent. The bottom of the tree should also be sticky with resin, and needles should not come off easily when the tree is tapped on the ground.

When you get your fresh tree home, make sure to set it up securely away from fireplaces, vents, or radiators. Also ensure that the tree is secure on its base so it doesn’t fall over, and refrain from placing it in places with high foot traffic or in doorways. 

Monitor the tree’s water intake each day so that it doesn’t dry out. Remember, dry trees are a major fire hazard, causing an average of 160 house fires and resulting in $10 million dollars in property damage every year.

Faulty & Broken Holiday Lights 
Take a close look at your holiday lights at the start of the holiday season. While these colorful lights are a festive way to illuminate your living space, they should be inspected for damage regularly. Check for frayed, loose or broken wires before plugging in lights. Even a single broken bulb or cracked socket is cause for concern. Promptly repair or discard damaged light sets.

In addition, don’t overload electrical outlets with light strands. Always use a surge protector, and never connect more than three sets of lights to one extension cord to avoid the risk of electric shock and fire. Finally, be sure to turn off all lights when you go to bed and whenever you leave the house.

Broken & Swallowed Ornaments
If you’re decorating a tree with small children or pets in your home, avoid sharp or otherwise breakable Christmas ornaments to avoid cuts from broken pieces. You may also want to avoid decorating with ornaments that are very small or that may resemble food and present a choking hazard to kids and animals.

Outdoor Decorating Slips, Trips, & Falls
Much of Arizona won’t experience a white Christmas this year, but it’s still important to be careful when hanging outdoor decorations. Always heed your ladder’s safety warnings. Be mindful of weight limits, use ladders on a stable, dry surface, and don’t step above the highest recommended rung. If possible, enlist help from a friend, neighbor, or another family member to keep the ladder stable and help you avoid having to make dangerous reaches and toppling over. 

If you decide to spruce up your palm tree with some Christmas lights, be careful to tuck extension cords out of the path of walkways to avoid a nasty slip and fall accident.
Happy Holidays from Lerner and Rowe Injury Attorneys
The Arizona personal injury attorneys at Lerner and Rowe Injury Attorneys would like to wish you and your family a joyous holiday season.

If you or a loved one has suffered an injury related to a defective product, slip and fall, or car accident over the holidays, contact Lerner and Rowe Injury Attorneys today—you may be eligible for compensation. We’ll be available throughout the holiday season to protect your rights and review your personal injury case.

Contact our Arizona offices at 602-977-1900, speak to a representative using our LiveChat feature, or submit your free case evaluation online 24/7. 

The information on this blog is for general information purposes only. Nothing herein should be taken as legal advice for any individual case or situation. This information is not intended to create, and receipt or viewing does not constitute, an attorney-client relationship.