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Holiday safety is an issue that burns brightest from late November to mid-January, when families gather, parties are scheduled and travel spikes. Take some basic precautions to ensure your family remains safe and injury-free throughout the season.
Many people choose to travel by car during the holidays, which has the highest fatality rate of any major form of transportation based on fatalities per passenger mile. In 2017, 329 people died on New Year's Day, 463 on Thanksgiving Day and 299 on Christmas Day, according to Injury Facts. Alcohol impairment was involved in about a third of the fatalities.
Stay safe on the roads over the holidays and every day:
Decorating is one of the best ways to get in a holiday mood, but emergency rooms see thousands of injuries involving holiday decorating every season.
When decorating follow these tips from the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission:
Candles and Fireplaces
Use of candles and fireplaces, combined with an increase in the amount of combustible, seasonal decorations in many homes during the holidays, means more risk for fire. The National Fire Protection Association reports that one-third of home decoration fires are started by candles and that two of every five decoration fires happen because the decorations are placed too close to a heat source.
Be alert to the dangers if you're thinking of celebrating the holidays by frying a turkey. The Consumer Product Safety Commission reports there have been 154 turkey-fryer related fires, burns or other injuries since 2004, with $5.2 million in property damage losses have resulted from these incidents.
NSC discourages the use of turkey fryers at home and urges those who prefer fried turkey to seek out professional establishments or consider using an oil-less turkey fryer. If you must fry your own turkey, follow all U.S. Fire Administration turkey fryer guidelines.
Keep your holidays happy by handling food safely. The foodsafety.gov website from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services provides some valuable holiday food safety tips:
Watch this holiday food safety video for more information.
Gifts and toys should inspire joy, not cause injuries. More than a quarter of a million children were seriously injured in toy-related incidents in 2017. Avoid safety hazards while gifting with these tips from the American Academy of Pediatrics and the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission:
To find out about holiday toy safety and recalls, check the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission website.
Most people who misuse pain medications get them from friends and family.
Injuries and deaths from button batteries has increased ninefold.
This Consumer Product Safety Commission video demonstrates the risks of frying a turkey in oil.
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