For most of us, a trip to the emergency room isn’t exactly the memory we want associated with holiday gatherings. To help make this season a safe one, we present ten common holiday accidents and tips on how to avoid them this winter.
1. Christmas Tree Fires
Okay, this one isn’t exactly a shocker, but it’s still one of the most common home accidents during winter (and a deadly one). In fact, one out of every 31 fires during Christmas result in a death (versus one out of 144 for the entire year). Luckily, prevention is easy. Unplug the Christmas tree lights when you’re out of the room (or out of the house), and you’ll be able to sleep soundly.
Heat is a real problem in the winter. Urgent cares and emergency rooms are filled with burn victims every holiday season thanks to filled kitchens, tight timetables and busy households. Instead, cooks out there need to slow down, accept help and let the family wait a little longer for that delicious holiday meal.
3. Luggage Strain
Yes! This is a real thing! Every year, travelers report injuries related to heavy lifting. Luggage, presents, decorations, Christmas trees—they all require a little bit of heave-ho. If you haven’t yet started pumping iron, get on it! Or make the young people carry it all. Their bodies bounce back, right?
4. Car Accidents
Changes in weather, shorter days with more darkness and an uptick in driving after a few celebratory drinks all increase our chances of a car accident this winter season. While car accidents can’t always be prevented, you can protect yourself (and that wallet) by ensuring you are properly covered with the right auto insurance (and at a rate that will still allow some extra Christmas shopping).
5. Accidental Poisonings
Of the entire holiday accident list, this is probably the one you’d least suspect. Poisonings of pets and small children thanks to delicious-looking plants and decorative berries are a common threat during this time of year. Our advice: Keep the poinsettias and berry-strewn wreaths up high and out of reach.
6. Food Poisoning
Food poisoning is another frequent cause of urgent care visits during this time of year, especially with many Thanksgiving lovers enjoying leftovers far past their expiration date. A good rule of thumb: Eat that turkey within three days of preparation for optimal taste and health.
7. Decorating Mishaps
Probably the most common of all holiday accidents are due to decorating disasters. Each year, men and women everywhere fall from ladders and rooftops while attempting the very best seasonal displays. To help keep you safe while you combat that animated Santa, make sure BOTH feet are firmly on the ladder (and don’t ever use the top rung).
8. Slips and Falls
Slips and falls mirror car accidents in that they occur thanks to changes in weather conditions, poor visibility and sometimes after an evening of celebrating (or surviving) with the family. For the most part, these types of accidents are hard to prevent, but homeowners can easily (and affordably) protect themselves from liability with the proper home insurance coverage.
9. Extension Cord Attacks
Roughly 2,000 people are treated each season for sprains and lacerations thanks to exposed extension cords. These decorating necessities also contribute to fires because of improperly placed cords (using indoor ones for outdoor displays) and overloaded circuitry. You can protect yourself and your loved ones by always using cords responsibly and by ensuring regular paths are clear (and having the proper home insurance).
10. Wrapping Paper Turmoil
Okay, wrapping paper isn’t exactly to blame, but every year enthusiastic gift openers visit the ER thanks to knife and box cutter injuries. To those wielding these sharp objects, always cut away from your body!
All right, there you have it: ten common holiday accidents. Prevent the ones you can and protect yourself from the rest. Make sure you’ve got the auto coverage and home insurance needed to protect you from the unexpected. Start your free insurance quote online or by calling 1-877-728-9966.
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