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Holiday Lighting Safety Tips

By Charles Isaac

Once again, it’s time to dust off the holiday decorations and liven up our homes for the season. Consider these electrical safety tips to help you avoid common electrical hazards and fires that could be sparked by holiday decorations. 

Consider LED Lights
LED lights generate less heat and last up to 20 times longer than traditional incandescent lights. Not only are they safer, but they’re far more efficient.

Don’t Overload
Never connect more than three strands of incandescent lights per extension cord because they could blow a fuse and increase the risk of an electrical hazard or fire. Read the manufacturer’s instructions to become familiar with how many strands are safe for LED holiday lights. 

Inspect Bulbs, Plugs and Wiring 
Remember to inspect decorations that have been in storage and dispose of any that have cracked or frayed wiring since these can cause electrical shocks, burns or fires. If you need to replace bulbs or fuses for your electrical decorations, be sure to unplug them first. 

Use Battery-Operated Candles
Decorate with battery-operated candles instead of traditional wax candles, as they provide the same effect as a burning candle, but are much less dangerous. 

Beware of Flammable Objects 
Never drape anything over a lightbulb or lamp shade.

Be Mindful of Strains and Sprains When Decorating
The amount of lifting, carrying, reaching, hanging and hauling that we do when decorating may exceed what we do at other times of the year. Be mindful when lifting heavy objects or reaching to place decorations. Take frequent breaks and gently stretch hard-working muscles.

Ensure Your Ladder is Stable and Secure 
When hanging lights outdoors, use a wooden or fiberglass ladder instead of a metal one.

Turn Off Lights Before Bed
Before going to bed or leaving your home, remember to turn off all indoor and outdoor holiday lighting.

For more electrical safety tips, visit www.sce.com/staysafe.

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