Keeping Safe from Holiday Hazards

Keeping Safe from Holiday Hazards
Winter has arrived, and with it comes frigid temperatures and icy danger. It pays to take extra precautions during this time of year. Let’s discuss some ways for you to keep safe from holiday hazards.

Falling Off the Roof

This may seem like an odd danger to start with, but consider how many people climb up ladders to hang decorations. In the ice, snow and powerful winds, that fall from a ladder or roof is far more common in the winter than during other times of year. First, there’s the impact from the fall. If you happen to be holding electrical equipment and fall into the swimming pool, there is also the serious risk of electric shock drowning. This can easily be fatal.

For older adults over the age of 65, falls can be a serious health threat. According to the CDC, each year, millions of people in this age bracket fall. In fact, more than one out of four older people fall each year. What’s worse, less than half of these folks tell their doctors. Not only that, falling once doubles your chances of falling again. One out of five falls causes a serious injury such as broken bones or a head injury.

No matter your age, don’t climb a ladder alone. Ask someone to join you. They can help to steady the ladder. In case of an accident, the other person can immediately call for help. The buddy system is a great way to stay safe from holiday hazards.

Slipping on the Stairs

While we’re talking about falls, let’s talk about ice safety. When it comes to keeping safe from holiday hazards, slippery stairs can be deceptively treacherous. Be sure to salt your walkways and stairs frequently. Hold onto the railing at all times to prevent a potentially dangerous fall.

Keeping Safe from Holiday Hazards like Christmas Tree Fires

Every year, there are many devastating house fires due to Christmas tree accidents. Fortunately, there are some steps you can take to limit the possibility of a fire.

First of all, choose a healthy tree. This means finding the freshest tree you can. Next, be sure to water it every day. This can prevent the branches from becoming brittle and dry. Additionally, make sure that your pets aren’t drinking the tree water. This can dry out the tree and can be pretty unhealthy for your pets as well.

Next, make sure your lights are safe. Of note, use flame-retardant lights. LED lights, for example, are significantly less hot than traditional incandescent bulbs. As for the cords, be sure to inspect them before setting up the tree. Frayed or exposed wires can be a serious risk of fire damage. Finally, be sure to keep the tree away from radiators, fireplaces or other heat sources.

Driving Danger

During the colder months, snow and ice can be blinding on the road. We’ve written a full article dedicated to driving safely in the rain. Most of this also applies to snowy conditions. According to the National Safety Council, it is estimated 163 people died on New Year's Day in 2020 due to traffic. Additionally, there were 485 deaths on Thanksgiving Day, and it is estimated that 115 lost their lives on Christmas Day in 2019.

Above all, everyone should remember not to drink and drive. Put simply, alcohol and cars don’t mix. Alcohol impairment is involved in about one-third of the fatalities listed above. If you’re planning on imbibing, be sure to call a cab or make plans ahead of time to sleep over. Designate a sober driver if you absolutely must use the car. The colder weather can make driving more hazardous than usual, so be sure to stay as safe as possible on the road.