FROM THE CHIEF'S CORNER: OUTDOOR CHRISTMAS SAFETY

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By Fire Chief Sam DiGiovanna

December4, 2012  (San Diego) -- Regrettably, far too many of us tumble from ladders and rooftops, receiving a numberless wounds, sprains, busted bones, head wounds and even death when trimming for the holidays. Last year, over150, 000 people were treated in emergency rooms just from ladder accidents, not to cite thousands more electrical and additional trimming misadventures. Neglecting to adopt the suitable safety safeguards when trimming your home this holiday season can rapidly take the Merry right out of your Christmas says Fire Chief Sam DiGiovanna.

While trimming out-of-doors always make certain to:

  • Utilize only wooden or fiberglass ladders close to electrical lines. Metallic ladders conduct electricity, which can be deadly in the case of an accident.
  • Never decorate solo. Have another person close by in case of an emergency. 
  • Make certain your ladder is the correct height. It had better always extend at the least 3 feet over the roofline.
  • Never plant your ladder on a muddy or shaky surface.
  • Never surmount your ladder's weight boundary and never stand on its bucket ledge.
  • Do not transport gear when climbing up. Get another person to hand it to you instead.
  • Face the ladder while going up or down. Always keep your body centered between the rails.
  • Exclusively use out-of-door lighting outdoors. 
  • Read all manufacturer's instructions concerning outdoor lights and other decorations.
  • Exclusively use UL tested and authorized lights, extension cords and electrical decorations. This assures that they have been properly tested and authorized for safety.
  • Scrutinize all electrical decorations cautiously prior to installment. Replace any cracked, broken or warped bulbs, cords or wires.
  • Never use staples or nails to string up light strings. Use plastic hooks fashioned for this design. They're cheap and safe.
  • Do not overburden extension cords. Check out packaging to ascertain how many strings can be safely put together or plugged in at a time,
  • Never allow lights or other decorations on overnight or while absent from home.

Remember, there are professionals that can perform these duties. If you feel uncomfortable on ladders, don’t hesitate to call them!

Accidents can take place, no matter how cautious you are.

Next week we will focus on indoor Christmas Safety!

Fire Chief Sam DiGiovanna