Mobile website

This Week at Onstad's Insurance

Holiday Decorating Safety Tips

November 21, 2016

Christmas Decorations

Annually, during the two months surrounding the holiday season, more than 14,000 people are treated in hospital emergency rooms due to injuries related to holiday decorating.

In addition, Christmas trees are involved in hundreds of fires resulting in an average of 15 deaths and $13 million dollars in property damage annually.

Candle-related fires lead the list of hazards averaging more than 12,000 a year, resulting in 150 deaths and $393 million in property damage.

Holiday decorating-related fires and injuries are most commonly caused by defective holiday lights, unattended candles and dried-out Christmas trees.

Here are some tips to help prevent holiday fires and injuries:

Trees and Decorations

  • When purchasing an artificial tree, look for the label “Fire Resistant.” Although this label does not mean the tree won’t catch fire, it does indicate the tree is more resistant to catching fire.
  • When purchasing a live tree, check for freshness. A fresh tree is green, needles are hard to pull from branches and do not break when bent between your fingers. The bottom of a fresh tree is sticky with resin, and when tapped on the ground, the tree should not lose many needles.
  • When setting up a tree at home, place it away from heat sources such as fireplaces, vents, and radiators. Because heated rooms dry out live trees rapidly, be sure to monitor water levels and keep the stand filled with water. Place the tree out of the way of traffic, and do not block doorways.
  • In homes with small children, take special care to avoid sharp, weighted or breakable decorations, keep trimmings with small removable parts out of the reach of children who could swallow or inhale small pieces, and avoid trimmings that resemble candy or food that may tempt a child to eat them.

Lights

  • Indoors or outside, use only lights that have been tested for safety by a nationally-recognized testing laboratory, such as UL or ETL/ITSNA.
  • Check each set of lights, new or old, for broken or cracked sockets, frayed or bare wires, or loose connections. Throw out damaged sets. DON’T use electric lights on a metallic tree.
  • If using an extension cord, make sure it is rated for the intended use. When using lights outdoors, check labels to be sure the lights have been certified for outdoor use and only plug them into a ground-fault circuit interrupter (GFCI) protected receptacle or a portable GFCI.

Candles

  • Keep burning candles within sight. Extinguish all candles before you go to bed, leave the room or leave the house.
  • Keep lighted candles away from items that can catch fire and burn easily, such as trees, other evergreens, decorations, curtains and furniture.


Download more holiday safety tips from the Consumer Product Safety Commission.

 insurance in California

Get started now on a free, no-obligation

Homeowner Insurance Quote

More From This Week

Happy Birthday to Us!

It's our birthday!

Onstad’s Insurance is celebrating ninety-one years of service in California. We’re proud to have helped so many residents in San Ramon and the surrounding areas with their insurance needs.  More »

Lighting Bolt

Why Worry About Thunderstorms?

Are you prepared for the possibility of lightning, hail, tornados or straight-line winds?  More »

IIHS Family Van

Insurance Institute for Highway Safety's Top Safety Picks for 2017

Each year the Insurance Institute of Highway Safety names its top safety picks. See if your vehicle made the list for 2017.  More »

Dog going for a ride in car

Dogs need seat belts too!

The weather is going to be great for an evening drive this week. If you take Fido out for a drive this week (which is sure to be the highlight of his week!), be sure to keep him safe too.  More »

Speaking of homeowner insurance… See the latest from our blog Sep 8

Three Ways a Pool May Affect Your Homeowners Insurance – That oh-so-covetable experience of taking a dip in your very own pool...   more »

Home  |  About  |  Contact  |  Service  |  Privacy  |  Disclaimer  |  Search

© 2017 Onstad's Insurance Agency

3130 Crow Canyon Pl, Ste 250
San Ramon, California 94583

California License # 0383047