Exploring the Burn Hazards that May Be Lurking in Your Home This Holiday Season

As you deck the halls in preparation for the holidays, you should make sure that you are not creating unintended burn hazards that could damage your property and lead to a visit to West Hills Hospital’s ER. Below is a look at the most common fire and burn hazards in the home during the holidays.

Overloaded Outlets
You will want to use a surge protector when you plug in festive lights and electronic decorations this year. Be sure to inspect all cords for exposed wires and discard any that are in poor condition. If you use an extension cord, check to see that it is rated for the desired purpose.

Flammable Decorations
If you have a real pine tree, you will want to vacuum up dried needles that fall from the tree, as they can pose a fire hazard. Real trees should also be disposed of before they dry out so they are not a risk after the holidays are over. Use caution with fake snow, Christmas tree scent, and other products that could be ignited by candles or other flames.

Unattended Items on the Stove
If you have long-cooking items on the stove or in the crock pot, you should keep kids out of the kitchen and check on these items frequently to monitor boil-over accidents. Always teach your children to avoid the stove top and stay away from areas where hot dishes are being passed around. This video from West Hills Hospital’s world renowned Grossman Burn Center offers scald prevention guidance for busy kitchens during the holiday season.

Burning Candles
LED candles are an excellent alternative to  wax candles  because they do not have the potential to ignite other items around them. If you prefer burning candles, never leave them unattended and only place them on flat, flame-resistant surfaces. Older adults may need additional reminders. This video talks about how we can safeguard this risk group from burn injuries.

West Hills Hospital can provide excellent care for burn injuries that may arise this holiday season. For more tips on injury prevention, visit our website or call our Consult-A-Nurse healthcare information and physician referral line at (818) 676-4000. 

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