Safety Makes for Jolly Holidays

(To the tune "Oh Christmas Tree")

The holidays won't be jolly days

When injuries occur so many ways!

Yes it's holiday season once again, and what better time to remind everyone of some simple things you can do to keep you and your children safe and sound.

First if you have a holiday tree, secure it well to keep it from tipping. If it is a live tree, make sure its fresh, green, and that the needles are hard to pull off. Keep it well watered and away from floor heaters, fireplaces, or other heat sources. If it is artificial, make sure it is fire resistant. Keep no more than 3 strands of lights linked together on an extension cord and never use electric lights on a metal tree. Don't forget to inspect those light strings each year for frayed cords, cracked lamp holders or loose connections.

If there are children in the home, tinsel, small decorations, ornaments, and bulbs should not be at the bottom of the tree where small children can reach for them and then put into their mouths. In addition, some of the light products bought at stores warn about lead content in the wires. While the amount of lead contained in these wires is small, it is still a good idea to not ask children to hang lights and keep the wires as well as the lights out or reach of children. Wear gloves to hang the lights and wash hands after you have finished your decorating. You can also look for lead-free holiday lights but these may be hard to find.

As for candles, avoid putting them on trees and please keep candles placed elsewhere out of reach of small children, or just don't light them up at all if there are children in the house. Turn off all lights and blow out all candles when you sleep or leave the house to avoid a potential fire hazard and of course make sure your smoke detector is working.

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