It’s almost that time of year when friends and family gather to decorate and celebrate the holidays. While preparing for this holiday season, the Electrical Safety Authority (ESA) encourages Ontarians to put safety first when buying and installing festive lighting and décor.
“Holiday lights and decorations are a welcomed sight during the holidays, but before you put up last year’s decorations or purchase new ones, ensure your loved one’s safety by using electrical products with a certification mark, using the correct decoration type for indoor or outdoor, and checking for overhead powerlines before hanging lights outdoors,” says Nansy Hanna, Senior Director, Engineering and Regulations, Electrical Safety Authority.
ESA has compiled a list of 10 safety tips to help you and your loved ones stay safe this holiday season:
- Check old decorations for signs of damage and replace damaged electrical products with new ones
- Choose the right light for the job. Read the instructions to make sure you’re using the correct lights for indoor or outdoor use
- When hanging outdoor lighting, look out for overhead powerlines when using a pole extension or a ladder. Keep tools back 3 m from overhead powerlines
- Keep outdoor connections above ground and out of puddles or snow
- Invest in proper clips for securing decorations
- Make sure bulbs don’t touch supply cord wires, cloth, paper, or other materials
- Buy electrical products (online and in-store) with the mark of an accredited certification agency. Here is a list: https://esasafe.com/approvalmarks
- Ensure children and pets don’t play with electrical decorations or cords
- Turn off holiday lights and decorations when you go out or go to bed
- Take down your decorations when the holidays are over because decorations aren’t designed for year-round use and can deteriorate over time
More holiday safety tips can be found at https://esasafe.com/holidaysafety. Make this holiday season is one to remember for the right reasons.
In addition, if you suspect something wrong or unsafe with your seasonal electrical consumer product, you should immediately stop using it and contact Health Canada Consumer Products.