Christmas safety

Thu 09 Dec 2021

Christmas decorations


  • Check your Christmas lights carry the British Standard sign and replace any bulbs that blow.
  • Always switch Christmas lights off and unplug them before leaving home or going to bed.
  • Check on elderly relatives and neighbours.


  • Don’t place candles near a Christmas tree or materials that can catch light easily.
  • Don’t attach decorations or lights to heaters, as they can burn easily.
  • Don’t let Christmas tree light bulbs touch anything that can burn easily, such as paper or fabrics.
  • Don’t leave cooking unattended.
  • Don't trail leads or cables across the floor as these may be a trip hazard.

Communal areas

  • Christmas decorations are not permitted within the stairwells, corridors or foyers of our flats or Haven schemes. Do not hang decorations from fire alarms, lights or around door ways.

Winter safety
Electric blankets

  • Unplug blankets before you get into bed, unless they have a thermostat control for safe all-night use,
  • Don’t leave electric blankets folded as this damages the internal wiring. Ensure they are stored flat or rolled up,
  • Test electric blankets every three years. Age Concern or your local Fire and Rescue Service may be able to do this for you.
  • Try not to buy second-hand blankets and check regularly for wear and tear. Replace your blanket when it is more than 10 years old.

Portable heaters

  • Always unplug portable heaters when you go out or go to bed.
  • Do not use gas or paraffin heaters.
  • Keep heaters away from curtains and furniture and never use them for drying clothes.

Winter driving

Check the following yourself or take your car to your mechanic and ask them to check the following:

  • Battery
  • Wipers
  • Engine anti-freeze levels
  • Windshield washer anti-freeze fluid
  • Heating system
  • Brakes
  • Tyres
  • Windshield defroster

Follow these tips for safe winter driving:

  • Keep your mobile fully charged
  • Pack a scraper, de-icer, snow shovel, hat, gloves, boots, a torch, bottle of water and a first aid kit.
  • On longer journeys, take blankets, a snack and a flask of warm drink.
  • Wash the car frequently to get rid of the salt and dirt.
  • Always keep a full tank of fuel - you never know when you might get delayed.
  • Don’t use water to defrost the windows.
  • On colder days be careful on tree lined roads - the trees prevent the sun’s warmth from thawing the road.

Keep yourself and others safe, by:

  • Slowing down
  • Keeping a greater distance between you and the vehicle in front, (increase the 2 second rule to 4 seconds or more)
  • Allowing extra time to complete your journey

Winter driving can be difficult. Yet with a little care and prior planning, you can minimise the risk and maximise safety for you, your passengers and other road users.

Extreme weather

  • Check the local weather forecast.
  • Listen to local radio for travel news.
  • Tell someone at your destination and when you expect to arrive.
  • Equip yourself with warm clothes, food, boots and a torch - in snowy conditions, take a spade.
  • Clear your windows and mirrors before you set out and carry a screen scraper and de-icer.