It’s that time of the year – the silly season. Aptly named, because this is often the time when safety takes a backseat to festive frivolity. Christmas lights come out, we eat too much, drink too much, spend too much and drive too far, often when we are tired and stressed.
Keep your family, your friends and yourself safe this Christmas by following a few simple rules.
Deck the Halls
- Only use quality Australian Standard (or equivalent) Christmas lights.
- Don’t use Christmas lights that have damaged plugs, leads or bulbs.
- Make sure that all lights, extension leads and power boards are suitable for the intended use (indoor or outdoor)
- Turn off Christmas lights before going to bed or leaving the house.
- Don’t use double adaptors or piggy back plugs.
- Test your safety switch and smoke detector to make sure they are working.
When putting up or taking down lights and other decorations:
- check overhead for powerlines and other hazards BEFORE starting
- use a suitable ladder, placed on firm stable ground
- do not over reach, get down and move the ladder if necessary
- have someone nearby in case there is an accident.
Baby, It’s Hot Outside
For those of us in the Southern Hemisphere, Christmas is one of the hottest times of the year.
- Stay in the shade in the hottest part of the day (10am – 2pm).
- Wear a hat and sun protective clothes.
- Regularly apply least 15+ SPF sunscreen.
- Drink plenty of water.
- Check your BBQ for damage before using it.
- Check for gas leaks by spraying the valve, hose and regulator with soapy water and checking for bubbles when you turn on the gas bottle (bubbles mean a gas leak!).
- Keep your BBQ away from flammable objects, like trees, the laundry, paint tins, petrol, etc.
- Keep the garden hose, fire extinguisher and fire blanket nearby, just in case.
- Never leave a lit barbeque unattended.
It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas
Christmas is a busy time. With so much to do, people can become fatigued and stressed. In the lead up to, and throughout the Christmas and New Year period, minimise fatigue and stress by:
- start early,write a list and tick off items as you do them
- getting enough quality sleep every night:
- go to bed and get up at the same time each day so your body develops a sleep rhythm
- don’t take your worries to bed, write them down so you can deal with them in the morning
- avoid caffeine, large, spicy meals and alcohol just before bed
- accepting that you can not do everything – learn to say no.
Remember Christmas is a time to celebrate with family and friends. Nothing is more important than staying safe and healthy.