‘Tis the season for… fires? Yep. Not exactly what you or your landlord want for the holidays. Here are some helpful hints to avoid on Thanksgiving and Christmas that everyone will remember for all the wrong reasons:
You might want to re-think your cooking method. Although tasty, The Consumer Product Safety Commission reports numerous turkey-fryer related fires, burns, explosions or carbon monoxide poisoning incidents yearly. Number one rule for turkey fryers: use outside only, and away from your home. Covered or enclosed areas such as the garage or the porch increase the risk for hazard. Don’t overfill the oil in the turkey fryer or leave the turkey fryer unattended. It might be time to consider the new oil-less turkey fryers now on the market!
Living in Florida, we have such little time for weather suitable for a nice fire. But keep in mind the combustible, seasonal decorations and their proximity to your fireplace. Shortly after Thanksgiving, the Christmas decorations line your mantle. With 80-degree temperatures, our evergreens begin to dry out quickly. Don’t burn wreaths or wrapping paper in fireplaces. These items tend to burn hotter with higher flames than wood or pre-formed logs. Do you know when the fireplace was last cleaned?
Aunt Ida’s yearly Christmas candle may be the last gift you receive. Don’t burn candles near Christmas trees, curtains or other dry, flammable items. Some artsy candles contain dried foliage or flowers. These can easily catch fire as the wick burns down.
Although staring into a warm fire or candle may relax you, it can also put you to sleep. Unattended flames equate to danger for persons and property.
Decorations are usually primarily concentrated in one or two rooms. Keep extension cords tucked away from decorations and out of main traffic areas. Don’t overload circuits with excessive extension cords and power strips that may be in poor condition.
Are you the host? Help guests avoid overloading and short-circuiting your outlets with electronic devices, hair dryers, and appliances. We love our historic neighborhoods, but they typically run short on outlets. Don’t add more outlets with a power strip, but instead unplug items not being used to make room for additions.
Stay safe and ring in a new year!