#BestWarwickshireChristmas: Deck the Halls

Christmas is a time your home is likely to be filled with friends and family. In the excitement of it all, accidents can happen. These simple tips will help keep you and your loved ones stay safe:

Fairy Lights

Much as we may want to cover our house in twinkling lights, make sure to check the lights’ packaging for the power output and never plug in more than your plug can handle. Make sure trailing flexes are not causing a trip hazard.  Check that lights carry the British Safety Standard mark. Even if you’ve followed these precautions, you should still unplug all indoor lights at night, or when you leave the house.

Tree

Make sure your tree is the right size for the room, properly secured to prevent it toppling over, away from heating equipment and not blocking exit routes. If you are using an artificial tree, make sure it’s fire retardant.

Candles and open fires 

Candles create a cosy atmosphere, but they’re still open flames. Ensure candles are in proper holders so they can’t fall over, and do not leave lit candles unattended for any length of time. Make sure open fires are well guarded.

Presents

Always purchase age appropriate gifts for children from a reputable retailer and which conform to safety standards.  Clear up as you go and keep an eye out for small items that could pose a choking hazard for children and pets. Don’t be tempted to use the batteries from your smoke alarm to power any Christmas presents

Kitchen

Sharp knives, boiling water and hot fat can make the kitchen a dangerous place. Don’t be distracted when cooking – fire starts when your attention stops. Give yourself plenty of time to prepare and cook the dinner.

Alcohol

Many of us like to enjoy a tipple at Christmas, but make sure you drink sensibly. Ensure all items such as glasses and tins are removed and thrown away to avoid little ones, or pets drinking the remains.

Pets 

Festive favourites can seriously harm your pets. A pet might see shiny tinsel as a toy, but a single strand can become tangled in its intestines, causing serious damage. Avoid hanging ornaments, tinsel and Christmas tree lights at the bottom of your tree where your pet can get them.  Steer clear of traditional Christmas plants like mistletoe, holly and poinsettia- they can be poisonous to pets if ingested. Chocolate is a treat best kept for humans – it’s poisonous to cats and dogs. All grapes, raisins, currants and sultanas are also toxic to dogs; as are foods that contain them – which means no mince pies for your pooch.