There’s nothing like being home for the holidays surrounded by all your loved ones. Cherish this special time by learning how to protect your friends and family with these fun safety tips. There’s help here for cooking safety, gift giving, holiday travel and fire safety. Have a safe holiday season!
Cooking and food
• Keep your holiday meals both safe and delicious by reducing the spread of contamination. Wash your hands before, during and after preparing food. Wash fruits and vegetables before cooking them, too. Separate raw meat from other foods. Wash anything the raw meat has touched like knives, cutting boards and your hands.
• To avoid food poisoning, make sure your foods are cooked all the way. Use a food thermometer to check. As tempting as they may be, do not eat raw dough or batter. They may have harmful germs like E. coli and salmonella.
• Keep matches, lighters and candles away from young children. Make sure lit candles are not close to flammable objects. Don’t put them in places where they can be knocked over.
• Consider using flameless candles during your holiday celebrations. Turn off and unplug lights and decorations when you go to bed and when no one is home.
• Make sure your smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors are working.
• Store a fire extinguisher in the kitchen. Ensure all family members know how to use the fire extinguisher.
• Have a fire escape route from your house. If you are staying at a hotel or Airbnb, know the recommended fire escape routes. Practice a home fire drill before a holiday gathering in your house.
• Think about practical and thoughtful items that could be an emergency preparedness gift. These could include flashlights, water bottles, first-aid kits, cool masks or hand sanitizer with a good scent.
• Try finding items that can be used in an emergency and for fun in everyday life. A water-proof backpack is a perfect example! Your loved one can use the backpack on a rainy day at school or in harsh weather conditions.
• Pack an emergency kit to take on your holiday vacation with your family. Include bottled water, non-perishable food, a manual can opener, a first-aid kit, a flashlight and extra batteries and a portable phone charger.
• Don’t forget about your furry friends! Pack emergency supplies for your pets like extra food and water, a sturdy leash, a harness, a pet carrier, a pet toy and a pet bed.
• Protect yourself from COVID-19 and the flu. Stay updated on your vaccines. Mask up and test for COVID-19 if you have symptoms or have had a close contact. Stay home if you are feeling sick.
• Check your car emergency supplies. They should include a flashlight, pliers, a wrench, a screwdriver, jumper cables and a first aid kit. Do not risk your safety to get to your holiday destination. If there is dangerous weather or a COVID-19 spike, stay home and enjoy a staycation.
Being prepared and keeping those close to you safe is the best present you can give this holiday season. Don’t forget these safety tips as you gather with your friends and family each year. Happy holidays!