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The Golden Rules That Keep Your Home Safe from Electrical Fire This Holiday Season

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Who doesn’t just love the festive twinkling lights that get us all in the mood for Christmas? Driving through the city to get those last-minute gifts, and sitting by the fire at home, those lights are just the thing to build the excitement of the holidays.

Now, don’t get too competitive with those holiday lights. Spare a thought for the neighbors of Martha May Whovier in the Christmas movie The Grinch. Remember that Christmas light gun that blasted lights all over her home? Those poor Who’s had to wear shades to get to sleep!

Let’s face it, it wouldn’t be the same without the lights, but according to the US Fire Administration, a third of home Christmas tree fires are caused by electrical problems. Let’s follow the golden rules to stay safe this festive period:

  • Unplug

You may be rushing from one department store to the next, but always remember to unplug when you leave the house and always when you go to bed. Leaving your tree lights on for extended periods or overnight means that the lights get hot, even the LED ones. This is often how fires start.

  • Replace

When you get around to untangling that ball of Christmas lights, and finish wishing you had taken more care last January, remember that it’s important to replace any old or damaged lights. Examine the light strings for any damage to the electrical cord and plug in to assess any broken light bulbs. Remember: cable or bulb damage can cause electrical shock or fire.

  • Careful positioning

Chose the position of your tree within the home carefully, because placing it close to curtains, furniture and rugs could have a devastating effect. Once a furnishing catches fire, it’s not long before it spreads.

  • Don’t overload

If you use extension cords, occasionally touch them when plugged in to see if they’re getting hot. Avoid a Clarke Griswold moment from Christmas Vacation with the family freezing on the lawn while you thrust electrical adapters together. Overloaded extension cords are a fast track to the naughty list. 

  • Stick to recognized retailers

Avoid cheap and cheerful when it comes to Christmas lights and save the bargains for other purchases. Lights that fail to pass safety standards are not going to fly this Christmas, we don’t care how much elf magic you sprinkle on them. Only the lights that are UL-listed make our wish list. Look for the mark of approval sticker, which you’ll spot on the cord of light strings.

  • Outdoor

Only use the outdoor lights (which have the red holographic mark) and not the indoor lights (which have the green holographic mark and state “indoor-only please”) when hanging lights outside. If not, that December weather is going to cause an electrical hazard.

Light of our Lives

The people of St Pete are our people. Our community. Our neighbors. Our friends. Please stay safe this holiday, and always.

If you or a loved one have the misfortune to suffer a house fire this holiday season, Jenkins Law PL is here to get you through to the other side. We will handle the insurance claim while you get the house ready for the in-laws coming for turkey leftover. Our insurance claim lawyers in Florida have an outstanding record when it comes to handling a variety of claims, including fire damage so get in touch to see how we can perform a Christmas miracle with your insurance claim.

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