Holiday Light Safety

When it’s time to switch your holiday lights on, you’ll want to make sure you have safety in mind. Here are the best ways to prepare your home and decorations before the holidays:

• Check last year’s string lights and make sure they aren’t frayed.

• When replacing any bulbs, make sure the wattage and voltage match the original strand.

• Check for overhead power lines before hanging outdoor lights, keeping at least 10 feet away from lines.

• Avoid running extension cords through heavily trafficked areas.

• Keep lights, trees and decorations away from heat sources like candles and fireplaces. Ensure that lights being placed outside are labeled for outdoor use only.

• If you’re using a ladder for outdoor lights, make sure someone is standing at the base to secure it.

• Opt. for a longer extension cord rather than connecting multiple shorter cords.

• Plug all outdoor lights into ground fault circuit interrupters (GFCI) outlets.

• Do not staple or nail through light strings or electrical cords, and do not attach anything to utility poles.

• Set an automatic timer that turns off the lights even if you forget.