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Trees Artificial “Snow” Lights

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									During the holiday season, it is very important to be aware of seasonal fire & safety hazards that can dampen your holiday spirits - both at home and in the workplace. Take holiday lighting for example - a long-time, popular tradition. But beware, faulty and worn holiday electrical lighting increases the chances for household accidents - especially fire. Christmas trees are particularly vulnerable to fire. Each year fires occurring during the holiday season injure 2,600 individuals and cause over $930 million in damage.

Lights
• Check the manufacturer’s instructions on your electrical decorations to determine the maximum number of decorative lights (light strings) and decorations that may be connected together. If the product packaging does not indicate the maximum number of light strings that may be connected, do not connect more than three light string sets together. • Never overload extension cords - it could cause the cord to overheat and start a fire. Use no more than three light string sets per single extension cord. • Use miniature lights with cool-burning bulbs. Indoors or outside, use only lights that have been tested for safety. Identify these by the label from an independent testing laboratory. Use indoor lights only indoors. • Before plugging in electrical decorations, carefully check each set of lights, new or old, for broken or cracked sockets, frayed, loose or bare wires, or loose connections. Damaged sets may cause a serious electric shock or start a fire. Discard or repair them before using. Always unplug a light string or electrical decoration before replacing light bulbs or fuses. • Fasten outdoor lights securely to trees, house, walls or other firm support to protect from wind damage. Don’t mount or support light strings in any way that might damage the cord’s wire insulation. • Turn off all lights on trees and other decorations when you go to bed or leave the house. Lights could short and start a fire. • Never use electric lights on a metallic tree. The tree can become charged with electricity from faulty lights, and any person touching a branch could be electrocuted! To avoid this danger, use colored spotlights above or beside a tree, never fastened onto it! • Keep “bubbling” lights away from children. These lights with their bright colors and bubbling movement can tempt curious children to break candle-shaped glass, which can cut, and attempt to drink liquid, which contains a hazardous chemical. • Don’t allow children or pets to play with light strings or other electrical decorations. These decorations aren’t toys and could produce a deadly electric shock if they are misused.

Trees
Most artificial trees sold now are fire resistant. If you buy one, look for a statement specifying this protection. A fresh tree will stay green longer and be less of a fire hazard than a dry tree. To check for freshness, remember: • • • • • • • A fresh tree is green. An evergreen tree’s needles will retain their green color even when dry. Fresh needles are hard to pull from branches. When bent between your fingers, fresh needles do not break. The trunk cut of a fresh tree is sticky with resin. When the trunk of a tree is bounced on the ground, a shower of falling needles shows that tree is too dry.

Leave tree outside until ready to decorate. Place the tree away from fireplaces, radiators and other heat sources. Heated rooms will dry trees out rapidly, creating a fire hazard. Cut off one to two inches of the trunk to expose fresh wood. A diagonal cut provides better water absorption. Trim away branches as necessary to set tree trunk in the base of a sturdy, water-holding stand with wide spread feet. Keep the stand filled with water while the tree is indoors. A 6’ tree will use 1 gallon of water every two days. Mix a commercial preservative with the water. Check water level every day. Place the tree out of the way of traffic and do not block doorways. Secure the tree to prevent tipping. Use thin wires to secure a large tree to walls or ceiling. These wires are almost invisible. Dispose of the tree properly and consider recycling your tree.

Artificial “Snow”
Artificial snow sprays can irritate lungs if inhaled. To avoid injury, read container labels; follow directions carefully.

1321 Murfreesboro Road, Suite 200, Nashville Tennessee 37217

(615) 367-4404 Direct (615) 367-3887 Fax

To learn more about PureSafety and what our flexible, innovative online safety training solutions can do for you, visit our website or contact us today.

www.puresafety.com Call Toll-Free (888) 202-3016

Candles
• Never leave lit candles unattended. • Never use lighted candles on a tree or near other evergreens. • Keep candles, potpourri burners and incense away from materials that will burn, such as other decorations, paper, plastic, fabric or curtains. • Always keep candles away from children and pets. • Make sure there is nothing directly above lit candles. • Place candles in sturdy non-flammable containers and extinguish before going to bed.

Fires
• Have your chimney connections and flues inspected by a professional and cleaned if necessary prior to the start of every heating season. Use a sturdy screen when burning fires. Burn only wood - never burn paper or pine boughs. Before lighting any fire, remove all greens, boughs, papers, and other decorations from fireplace area. Check to see that the flue is open. • Use care with “fire salts” which produce colored flames when thrown on wood fires. They contain heavy metals that can cause intense gastrointestinal irritation or vomiting if eaten. Keep away from children.

Trimmings and Decorations
Always use the proper step stool or ladder to reach high places. Before using a ladder, read and follow the manufacturer’s instructions. Use only non-combustible or flame-resistant materials. Consider wearing gloves while decorating with spun glass “angel hair” to avoid skin irritation. Choose tinsel, artificial icicles, plastic or non-leaded metals. Do not use ceramics with leaded paint. Leaded materials are hazardous if ingested by children. In homes with small children and pets, take special care to: • • • • • Avoid decorations that are sharp or breakable. Keep trimmings with small removable parts out of the reach of children and pets. Pieces could be swallowed or inhaled. Avoid trimmings that resemble candy or food. A child or pet could eat them!

Paper
• When making paper decorations, look for materials labeled non-combustible or flame-resistant. • Never place trimmings near open flames or electrical connections. • Remove all wrapping papers from tree and fireplace areas immediately after presents are opened. • Do not burn papers in the fireplace. A flash fire may result as wrappings ignite suddenly and burn intensely.

Holiday Food Preparation and Cooking
• Store and serve foods at proper temperatures. Keep hot food hot and cold food cold. Hot foods should be held at 140 degrees Fahrenheit (F) or above after being cooked and cold foods should be held at 45 degrees F or below. • If you use items in preparing hors d’oeuvres or sauces that must be refrigerated, be sure to keep refrigerated until serving. • When cooking on the stove top, keep handles on pots and pans turned inward to avoid spills. • If frying a turkey, follow all safety precautions as specified by the manufacturer. Never use water on a grease fire.

Mistletoe, Holly and Poinsettias
• Mistletoe can be very toxic to animas and people. If any part of the plant is ingested, call your poison control center and seek medical attention immediately. Mistletoe can cause vomiting, severe diarrhea, difficult breathing, shock and death within hours of ingestion. • Holly berries and leaves may also cause nausea, stomach ache, vomiting and diarrhea if ingested. • Poinsettias are less dangerous, but the plant contains a milky sap that can irritate eyes, skin and the mouth and cause gastrointestinal irritation if ingested. Seek medical attention if needed.

1321 Murfreesboro Road, Suite 200, Nashville Tennessee 37217

(615) 367-4404 Direct (615) 367-3887 Fax

To learn more about PureSafety and what our flexible, innovative online safety training solutions can do for you, visit our website or contact us today.

www.puresafety.com Call Toll-Free (888) 202-3016

Wash, Wash, Wash Your Hands!
Before you begin to prepare food After using the restroom After emptying the trash/garbage After handling raw potentially hazardous foods such as meat and egg products • After touching any part of the body • After coughing or sneezing • During food preparation and anytime that your hands become contaminated • • • •

Parties (Continued)
• Designate a Driver - When attending a party, designate a nondrinking driver. If you are hosting a holiday gathering, be sure there are non-alcoholic beverages for guests who are driving.

Smoke Detectors & Fire Extinguishers
Now would be an excellent time to test smoke and carbon monoxide detectors and check fire extinguishers. It’s a good idea to test these devices on a monthly basis and replace batteries at least once a year. If you don’t have these essential items, put them on the top of your priority list. They also make very good holiday gifts.

The Bird
Defrost the turkey in the refrigerator (24 hours for every 5 pounds - usually 3-4 days for the average size turkey). You can speed up the thawing process by completely submersing the turkey in cold water (30 minutes per pound). Keep the temperature below 45 degrees F. Keep all food preparation surfaces, dishes, cooking utensils and hands clean. A raw turkey on your counter top or sink can spread bacteria and contaminate the next item touching the surface.

Holiday Travel
• Buckle Up - During the holiday months, people travel more than ever. Heavy traffic, winter weather conditions and fewer daylight hours can be a hazardous combination on the roads. Ensure that all passengers wear safety belts. Seat children in the back seat of the car and in approved child safety seats and restraints if younger than six years old, or according to local law. • Leave plenty of space between you and other vehicles, especially trucks. Increase spacing based on the conditions such as ice, snow, rain, and fog. • Plan your route and include rest stops. A little pre-planning can make the experience more enjoyable. Make sure you are well rested before your trip. Eat light meals and stop every two or three hours to stretch and walk around to get your blood flowing. Occasionally roll down windows for fresh air. Designate a co-captain to stay alert with you. Listen to the radio. Call the state highway patrol for the latest road conditions. • Make sure your vehicle is thoroughly checked out prior to departure. A pre-trip inspection should include brakes, lights, wipers, engine belts, heater & defroster, battery and charging system. Check all fluid levels including: antifreeze, oil, transmission, brake, battery, power steering and windshield washer. Check tires for wear and proper air pressure. Tires can lose about a pound of pressure for every 10 degree F drop in temperature. Check your spare tire. You should also have a first aid kit, flashlight (with extra batteries), jumper cables, and flares. • Don’t overload your vehicle or obstruct your view. Consider sending packages to your destination ahead of time.

To Stuff or Not To Stuff...
The USDA Meat and Poultry Hotline recommends that stuffing be cooked outside the bird. However, if you choose to cook the stuffing inside the bird follow these steps: • Make and cool dressing before stuffing the turkey. • Stuff the turkey just prior to cooking. Stuffing the turkey the night before can spoil the dressing and lead to bacterial growth. • Use a meat thermometer and cook until the inner thigh reaches 180 degrees F and the stuffing temperature is 165 degrees F. • After the meal, remove any remaining turkey you wish to keep from the bones. • Refrigerate all leftovers after the meal as soon as possible. Smaller portions will allow for faster cooling and preserve freshness.

Parties
• Party materials -- Decorate only with flame-retardant or noncombustible materials. • Smoking -- Consider not allowing smoking at all inside your home. If guests will be smoking, provide them with large, deep ashtrays and check them frequently. After the party, check inside and under upholstery and in trashcans for cigarette butts that may be smoldering.
1321 Murfreesboro Road, Suite 200, Nashville Tennessee 37217

(615) 367-4404 Direct (615) 367-3887 Fax

To learn more about PureSafety and what our flexible, innovative online safety training solutions can do for you, visit our website or contact us today.

www.puresafety.com Call Toll-Free (888) 202-3016

Holiday Travel (Continued)
• If you are traveling in the winter weather zone, pack a survival kit. A kit should include blankets, matches, drinking water, high energy food, shovel, windshield ice scraper/brush, deicer or salt, sand or cat litter (for traction on ice), and tire chains or traction mats. Maintain at least a half tank of gas.

General Rules for Holiday Safety
• Keep matches, lighters, and candles out of the reach of children. • Avoid smoking near flammable decorations. • Make an emergency plan to use if a fire breaks out anywhere in the home. See that each family member knows what to do. PRACTICE THE PLAN! • Avoid wearing loose flowing clothes - particularly long, open sleeves - near open flames - such as those of a fireplace, stove, or candlelit table. • Never burn candles near evergreens. Burning evergreens in the fireplace can also be hazardous. When dry, greens burn like tinder. Flames can flare out of control, and send sparks flying into a room, or up the chimney to ignite creosote deposits. • Plan for safety. Remember, there is no substitute for common sense. Look for and eliminate potential danger spots near candles, fireplaces, trees, and/or electrical connections.

Shopping Safety
As you find time to shop, please be mindful of the following safety tips: • Be aware of your surroundings. Look for suspicious persons or situations when you are in any area. • Remember where you parked your car. While this may sound elementary, many shopping areas are spread out over large areas. Being unable to locate a car can cause you undue confusion and stress that may present you as a better target to a criminal. • If shopping late in the day or after dark, park in an area that is well lighted. Keep in mind, if you are shopping at a mall, the time the store closes from which you enter the mall, as some stores close earlier than others. This may keep you from having to walk unnecessary distances to you car if you find the store has closed earlier than you expected. • Shop in pairs at the very least. Take a friend or family member shopping with you. There is something to be said for safety in numbers. • As you return to your car, make sure to keep your car key in your hand – Not your purse or pocket. • Avoid carrying large amounts of cash. Pay for purchases with checks, credit, or debit cards. Carry cash and wallets in a front pocket to reduce your chances of having your pocket picked. • Don’t leave personal items (e.g. cell phone, purse) or purchased merchandise in your parked car where it can be seen. Conceal these items also. While these steps don’t guarantee you will not become the victim of crime, they will hopefully reduce your chances of falling prey to a criminal.

From all of us at PureSafety, Have a Safe and Happy Holiday Season!

1321 Murfreesboro Road, Suite 200, Nashville Tennessee 37217

(615) 367-4404 Direct (615) 367-3887 Fax

To learn more about PureSafety and what our flexible, innovative online safety training solutions can do for you, visit our website or contact us today.

www.puresafety.com Call Toll-Free (888) 202-3016


								
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