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Posted on: December 7, 2023

Keep Your Holidays Merry with these Important Safety Tips

We encourages you to learn about these safety tips for common dangers we see during the holiday season. 

ELECTRICAL SAFETY 

  1. Don't override ground fault circuits. 
  2. Use extension cords safely -- avoid creating tripping hazards & keep them inaccessible to toddlers 
  3. Use no more than one extension cord per outlet. 
  4. Grasp the plug, not the cord, when removing electrical plugs from outlets. 
  5. Do not exceed the wattage recommendation in light fixtures, over-heating may occur. 
  6. Have damaged cords on electrical appliances (vacuums, mixers, sanders, etc.) replaced to avoid shocks, electricians and fires. 

FIRE SAFETY 

  1. Install and/or check smoke and carbon monoxide detectors and their batteries. 
  2. Have your chimneys professionally cleaned and inspected annually. 
  3. Use adequate screening and other barriers to keep ignited materials in the fireplace and children/pets out. 
  4. Do not use indoor fires to burn trash/rubbish such as wrapping paper, gift containers, etc. 
  5. Dispose of burnt/charred wood, charcoal, ashes, etc. in non-flammable containers to a secure outside location; do not use flammable containers such as cardboard boxes nor inappropriate storage areas such as wood decks/balconies and attached garages. 
  6. Space heaters need to be kept away from flammable materials such as drapes and upholstered furniture. Follow manufacturer's recommendations regarding ventilation; a slightly opened window or other source of fresh air may be necessary for safe operation. In general, newer units offer important safety features such as guards that help prevent burns to children & pets, as well as an automatic shut off, in the event that the unit is knocked over. If possible, older units should be replaced with newer models offering these, and other, important safety features. 
  7. Both show and tell overnight guests about your home's emergency evacuation plan.

FOOD & COOKING SAFETY 

  1. Maintain appropriate food temperatures when transporting, storing and cooking all foods. In general, keep cold foods cold/cool and hot foods hot/warm. Follow processor's directions, especially for thawing and cooking frozen foods. 
  2. Clean all utensils, preparation surfaces, containers, and hands before and after the preparation of raw fish, poultry and meat. Consider using disposable cutting mats and paper towels as well as an anti-bacterial dish detergent. Don't overlook the sanitation of cleaning cloths and sponges; clean them frequently with hot water and detergent by hand or in dish and/or clothes washer. 
  3. To help prevent burns: 
    - Don’t use excessive heat to cook foods; over-heated, spattering grease/oil is a burn hazard; burning food can lead to a kitchen fire. 
    - Use spatter screens & lids when pan frying, and appropriate sized, long-handled stirring spoons, serving forks, etc. when handling large and/or heavy pieces of hot food. 
    - Use pot holders and/or oven mitts of appropriate size and thickness; keep a few stored within easy reach of the stove top and oven(s) but away from heat sources and microwave vents. 
  4. Open microwaved containers with care and start with the side furthest away from your face. 
  5. In the event of a kitchen fire, suffocate it with a pan/pot lid or by closing the oven/broiler door. 
  6. Help mitigate cooking-related injuries -- keep young children and pets safely out the working area; use only appropriate and well-maintained tools-- dull knives can result in bad cuts, dish towels don't work as well as pot holders, covers made for microwave use will not melt to food and food containers. 
  7. Upon completion of cooking, completely remove all stuffing from turkey/chicken, etc. Place in a clean container for serving; refrigerate immediately.

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