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Christmas Decoration Injuries: Deck the Halls Disasters

Steve Wagner

Everyone loves the trees and the lights and the shiny ornaments, but no one enjoys spending the holiday season cooped up in a hospital bed, or immobilized by an injury!

Did you know that the CPSC reports an average of 13,000 people are treated for decoration-related injuries during the holiday season every year? An average of 250 injuries per day are suffered during the holiday season, as a result of decoration-related injuries.

In 2012, the most common injury types reported through emergency rooms were due to falls (34%), lacerations (11%), and back strains (10%).

If you missed our article on decoration-related fall injuries, be sure to go back and check it out for great holiday decorating safety tips!

To protect yourself from all other types of decoration injuries, here are a few safety tips for you to keep in mind this holiday season:

  • Take safety precautions against Christmas tree fires. Trees can ignite easily, so take precautions using safe extension cords, and tested lights. Keep trees away from heat and flame sources, water live trees at least every other day, and make sure to always turn off the tree lights when you are not around to monitor the tree.
  • Be careful when unpacking ornaments and other decorations: Most tree ornaments are made of highly breakable materials (glass, plastics, etc) and after being stored in boxes all year, it’s likely that something in the box might be broken. When emptying the box, always look where you are reaching (never reach in blindly), and if you spot a broken ornament, use gloves to handle the pieces. Cuts and lacerations from broken glass can be severe, and even result in infection if not treated properly.
  • Always test your lights before hanging them. Never use lights that aren’t professionally tested by companies such as Underwriters Laboratories (UL), Intertek (ETL) or the Canadian Standards Association (CSA), etc. You should also do a thorough job of testing your own lights for broken or damaged bulbs, and frayed wires. Never use light strands that have broken pieces or look damaged in any way.
  • When decorating with children, make sure you are observing and assisting them at all times. Having your kids help you decorate is quality family time and we definitely support that, however, protecting your kids from injuries is also important! Don’t let them use ladders, keep them away from electrical outlets, and help them hang fragile items.

Don’t let your holiday season be ruined by injuries and hospital bills! If you need our assistance with anything this season, give us a call at (888) 204-8440 to schedule your free Indiana personal injury consultation!


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