Decorating the house for the festive season can be one of the most enjoyable family experiences of the year. However, you should take particular care when erecting any lights on your home during the Christmas period in order to prevent a slip, trip or fall, or electrical shock. Here, Accident Advice Helpline demonstrates how to safely put up your house Christmas lights.
Use the correct equipment
A fall from height can be a particularly nasty experience and it’s important to try and avoid where possible. The additional danger of ice can make working at height extremely dangerous and it’s important to have the correct equipment when installing any Christmas lights. Use a good, sturdy ladder, preferably an A-frame or an extra-large step ladder. Make sure that the stepladder can reach at least six inches higher than where you need to reach, in order to avoid over-stretching yourself and suffering a nasty fall. In order to avoid the ladder slipping, always have someone to hold it for you. Make sure any extension cords are suitable for use outside in adverse conditions.
Checking any lights
Before you set out to decorate the house, you should check each individual set of lights before mounting them on the house to avoid any headaches later and also to reduce the amount of time spent on the ladder, preventing chances of slipping, tripping and falling.
Start with the top
When hanging lights, you should always start at the highest point of the house, in many cases this will be the chimney. You should use brick clamps in order to attach the wiring securely and safely. Wrap all exposed wires with electrical tape in order to reduce the chances of electric shock. Once you have hung a set of lights, tie the next set directly to it, similar to a shoelace, and remember to check each individual set of lights again for any malfunctioning lights before installing the next set. This will avoid any unnecessary removal and reinstallation of any sets of malfunctioning lights. Always remember to switch off any lights before going to bed. Christmas lights designed for outdoor use produce a large amount of heat and overuse can increase the risk of an electrical fire.
Follow the above guide and you can help reduce the chances of a slip, trip or fall this season. However, if you are injured and somebody else is to blame – the manufacturer of faulty lights which caused you burn or electric shock injuries, for example – then give us a call on 0800 689 0500 for free advice on a compensation claim.
Date Published: January 28, 2014
Author: David Brown