Avoid These Home Holiday Hazards

Approximately 12,500 individuals go to the emergency room for falls, cuts, shocks, and burns related to holiday decorating, according to an estimate by the Consumer Product Safety Commission. Who knew decorating could be so dangerous? Keep your loved ones safe this holiday season with these tips.

Home Safety:

Test all smoke alarms; replace batteries or smoke alarm if not working properly. This check should be performed monthly.

Arrange decorations so no outlet will be overloaded and no cords will be pinched by furniture. Check to be sure electrical cords and decorations don’t create potential falling hazards.

holiday hazardsChristmas trees:

According to the National Fire Protection Association, U.S. fire departments respond to an average of 230 home structure fires that begin with Christmas trees each year. While these fires are not common, they are very likely to be serious when they do occur—an average of one death for every 40 reported home structure Christmas tree fires versus and an average of one death for every 142 reported home structure fires.

Follow these guidelines to prevent Christmas tree fires.

-Christmas trees should be located at least three feet away from heat sources such as candles, fireplaces, space heaters, heat vents, and radiators. Almost half of all Christmas tree fires involve electrical malfunctions, emphasizing the importance of inspecting your light strands and electrical decorations before using them to decorate for the holidays.

-If you decorate using an artificial tree, ensure that it is a model that has been tested and labeled as fire resistant.

-Live trees used indoors can become a fire hazard as the needles dry out and become increasingly flammable. Dried out trees decorated with holiday lights can become even more hazardous because they are in contact with an electrical source.

-Water live Christmas trees daily. Your tree stand should have a capacity of at least one gallon, which is the amount that an average Christmas tree uses in one day.

-Once a tree dries out, it should not be kept in your home, garage, or against your home outdoors. Check for local recycling programs when it is time to dispose of your tree.


According to the U.S. Fire Administration, candles cause more than 10 deaths, 175 injuries, and $20 million in property damage during each holiday season. They’re beautiful, but it’s important to treat them with care. Never leave an open flame unattended; keep any burning candles within sight. Make sure that lighted candles are kept away from combustible materials such as wrapping paper and other decorations. Extinguish candles before leaving the room.

If you or someone you love has suffered from an injury sustained due to a fire, call the lawyers at Schuerman Law to learn how to get the justice and compensation you deserve. Call 1-800-274-0045 to schedule your free consultation today.