Well, here it is. At Vigiles, we love this time of year. Christmas is just weeks away now. The tree is up. The presents are nearly wrapped. The turkey is on order. All that remains is to leave out the whiskey and mince pie for Santa.
As you know, Vigiles take fire safety seriously. We do not want your festive season to be spoilt. Follow this checklist so this Christmas is a cracker and not to be remembered for the wrong reasons.
- Christmas tree – Old trees can be identified by bouncing the tree trunk on the ground. If many needles fall off, the tree has been cut too long and has probably dried out. We would not recommend buying one like this as it is a fire hazard. Once you have chosen your tree, keep your tree watered. An un-watered tree is also far more flammable, to see what we mean, check out this video.
- Decorative lights – More than likely these will have been kept up in the loft for nearly a year. If there are any rodents up there, they love to nibble cables. Give them a thorough check over for any signs of wear or damage. Your light display may look spectacular, but do not leave them on when you go out or overnight.
- Decorations – Do not attach them to or near any light source or heaters.
- Sockets – Have you noticed how your decorative light collection seems to grow each year! All those lights need to be plugged in somewhere. Resist the temptation to add further adapters into a socket bar. An overloaded socket is a major electrical fire risk. This handy interactive guide will ensure you do not exceed the maximum load.
- Portable heaters – The temperature is really taking a dip at the moment. The portable heater will be a useful ally to keep you warm. As it won’t have seen the light of day for a while, please check over the unit, its cable and plug for any deterioration or damage.
- Candles – There is something about candles at this time of year. Never leave one unattended. As we have more flammable decorations around at Christmas, please ensure they are placed well away from them.
- Open fire places and log burners – There is nothing better than a cosy fire and a glass of mulled wine after the post-Xmas dinner walk. If you have guests with young children and pets, a fireguard is a must.
- Cooking – As any parent knows, there are two major distractions on Christmas Day. Your excited children and the couple of sherries you may have had! Unattended cooking is a recipe for disaster.
- Smoke alarms – The presents are opened and that remote-controlled car from Auntie Irene doesn’t come with any batteries! The toy must be played with straight away. Where to get some batteries on Christmas Day without any shops being open? The temptation to remove them from your smoke alarm might seem like a great idea. Until you forget to replace them.
Now go and celebrate. Have a magical and safe Christmas from Vigiles.