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News

How to stay safe at Christmas

20 December, 2016

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Christmas is a time to relax and have fun with your family, but unfortunately for some that fun can turn into a disaster if not enough care is taken, so here are some ways to avoid having any Christmas-related injuries this year:

For those with children around the house it can be a stressful time trying to make sure they don’t injure themselves with all the extra stuff around the house. A few examples of possible incidents include:

-          Injuries to children from the excitement of having new toys e.g. riding bikes into walls/falling off them, or even excitedly ripping open plastic packaging and cutting themselves

-          Swallowing small batteries such as those found in watches or weighing scales can have serious consequences for children, and may even be fatal.

-          Decorations and berries (for instance holly or mistletoe berries) can present a choking hazard, especially to smaller children

It’s important to keep any choking hazards or dangers out of reach of children. When letting them open new toys, perhaps gently coax it off them so you can cut it with scissors and prevent any injuries. Bikes may be a hazard, but if accompanied by an adult there are likely to be much fewer incidents. 

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However, it’s not just children who can be injured at Christmas, adults are at risk too, especially after a tipple. Some accidents happen in the lead up to Christmas such as:

-          Wrapping presents may lead to injuries if you slip whilst using scissors or knives, make sure you cut the paper carefully and don’t leave it all to the last minute so you don’t have to rush.

-          Toys, new presents and wires around the Christmas tree can all present tripping hazards, it’s best to tape down any wires that may result in someone falling over them, and organise toys and presents in storage boxes or in safe pile to avoid trips.

-          Christmas lights are not just a tripping hazard, they can also be a danger because of the fire risk they pose. Leaving lights or candles on overnight or whilst you’re not in the house is one of the main cause of fires over the Christmas period. It’s important to double check that any lights are turned off at the plug when you’re not around, and to avoid leaving candles or lights on for long periods of time.

-          When trying to put the star or angel on the top of the tree, accidents are likely to occur. Make sure you stand on a solid platform so you do not fall and don’t strain yourself too much to avoid pulling any muscles.

-          When decorating the outside of the house many people take unnecessary risks. To avoid falling off your roof or slipping down the drainpipe, make sure you have the correct equipment and that you do not work alone.

Other accidents can occur on the day itself, such as:

-          Injuries from cooking disasters. It can be stressful cooking for a number of people at Christmas, and accidents are bound to happen. These involve hot fat or gravy spilling onto the cook as they try to multitask, or cuts when chopping vegetables. Take it slow, your family would rather you still have all your fingers than the food being on time.

-          Accidents may also occur if guests have had a little too much to drink. Make sure you do not drink and drive, and if you are the sober one keep an eye on any family members who are in danger of falling over their own feet.

-          When celebrating Christmas, many will get out the bottles of Champagne, but we wary of popping corks too forcefully, you don’t want to take someone’s eye out.

-          It’s tempting to try to entertain your kids by pretending to be Father Christmas for the day, but try not to do any unnecessary stunts, and definitely do not attempt to climb down the chimney!

Really though, Christmas is about spending time with your family and having a nice day, so make sure you all keep well, and have a Merry Christmas! 

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