You might wrongly assume that the main danger that Christmas poses your family is over-indulgence at the dinner table and the divulging of unsavoury secrets after one too many sherries.
But for the unlucky few, ‘tis the season to be injured – be it due to exploding tree lights, turkeys that fight back, candle meltdowns, figgy pudding disasters or even flying Champagne corks.
More than 80,000 people suffer accidents and injuries in their homes during the Christmas holidays, according to the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents, and most are entirely preventable with a little forethought and planning.
Adrian Flux Insurance Services, which provides a huge range of home insurance options just in case disaster does strike, has compiled a list to help you avoid a minefield of Christmas calamities. Although you’re on your own if your mother-in-law overhears you complaining about the fact she’s given you hand-knitted socks for the 16th consecutive Christmas.
Be safe this Christmas:
- Spending Christmas in plaster because you didn’t secure your stepladder when you put up those high decorations will put a real dampener on celebrations – especially if you’re supposed to be on kitchen duty. Check your steps are solid, make sure they’re on an even surface and ask someone to hold them for you. And don’t use a wobbly stool…
- Don’t be a Scrooge when it comes to fairy lights – replace old lights with ones that meet safety standards, switch them off when you’re not in the room and make sure nippers don’t use them as illuminated dummies.
- Cooking a full Christmas dinner is stressful enough without a trip to A&E between courses. Give yourself plenty of time to prepare and cook dinner to prevent accidents with knives and hot fat. Clear up any spills swiftly to prevent a tumble.
- Candles are magical – unless you leave them unattended and they burn your house down or melt their way through your TV set. Never leave lit candles unattended and don’t be tempted to try some olde worlde charm by placing them on your tree.
- Even opening your presents can be a hazard – use scissors rather than a knife to cut into boxes and clear away paper and packaging. More people are injured by tripping at Christmas than by any other accident.
- One in 10 of us burn themselves as they set the Christmas pudding on fire. A Christmas trifle might be less dangerous and Christmas ice-cream would definitely solve this problem.
- Finally, make sure you have a good stock of batteries for the gadgets and toys that will arrive on Christmas Eve – taking them out of the smoke alarm really isn’t a good idea, especially if you didn’t get round to replacing those dodgy old Christmas lights.
* Ensure that your home contents insurance gives you the comprehensive cover you need for common breakages in addition to fire and accidents. Visit www.adrianflux.co.uk or call 0333 55 55 000 for a bespoke quote.