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Safety Tips for Holiday Celebrating

Tis the season for exchanging gifts with family and friends, preparing lavish meals, and decorating the home with seasonal décor. However, despite the lively atmosphere and gorgeous displays that come with this time of year, there are certain holiday hazards everyone should be aware of in order to keep this season accident free. Our Sacramento personal injury attorneys share some safety tips for holiday celebrating.

Fire Safety

According to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), Christmas is the peak day for candle fires. How’s that for holiday cheer? Whenever you light a candle this holiday season (or any time of the year!), extinguish it before leaving it unattended, even if you’re only leaving the room for a couple of minutes (it’s far easier to relight a candle than it is to put out a house fire). Also, make sure to keep open flames away from other holiday decorations, as these can often catch fire easily (think things like wreaths, Christmas trees, and other flammable items) as well as out of reach of children and pets.

Food Safety

One of the best parts of holiday traditions like Hanukkah and Christmas is all the delicious food. If you’re handling or preparing a meal for a large group of people, don’t forget about basic food safety tips.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), holiday food safety tips include:

  • Don’t use the same area to prep raw meat and vegetables, fruit, seafood, and cheese—or, at the very least, thoroughly clean and sanitize the area between prepping each kind of food.
  • Use a clean food thermometer on all meat products to check that it’s cooked to a safe temperature.
  • Keep hot food hot and cold food cold when serving.
  • Place any leftovers in a refrigerator after no more than an hour and plan to finish eating everything within three days.
  • Wash your hands often and thoroughly before, during, and after preparing food.

Ice & Snow Safety

While we may not have to worry about ice very often in California, there are notable exceptions. Skiers, mountain climbers, and ice skaters are bound to come into contact with icy surfaces this time of year and people who live in areas with high elevation or in the high desert may experience snowy weather. If you are having guests over, make sure your walkways are clear of ice and snow. You can use salt to melt the ice or sand to add traction if needed. If there are any areas you are unable to clear in time or that present other hazards, put up a sign warning people to watch their step.

Ladder Safety

Plan on hanging up holiday lights outside, decorating a tall Christmas tree, or placing a menorah on a high window ledge? Chances are you’ll be using a ladder, or maybe just a step stool. Ask a family member to hold your ladder or stool steady for you while in use, even if you only need to go up a few rungs. Falling from a ladder can lead to very serious injuries, especially if the fall is from a height or onto an obstruction like a table, so please be as careful as possible when climbing.

Toy Safety

If you plan on purchasing toys for your own children and/or someone else’s, make sure you purchase products that have been deemed safe for their age group. While toys are fun, they can also present choking and other hazards. If you are buying a toy for a child who is not yours, talk to their parents about what gifts would be appropriate so you don’t accidentally purchase something potentially unsafe.

The Smolich and Smolich legal team would like to wish you all a happy and safe holiday season!

Contact our Sacramento personal injury lawyers if you or a loved one has been wrongfully injured. We are happy to discuss the details of your case during a free consultation.