For kids, Halloween is often one of the most anticipated holidays of the year. Dressing up, trick-or-treating, candy, parties, hayrides and corn mazes make for great fun and amazing childhood memories. Unfortunately, Halloween has become a holiday with increasing numbers of home fires.
According to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), decorations were the first item ignited in an estimated average of 860 reported home structure fires every Halloween between 2009 and 2013. These fires resulted in an average of 13 million dollars in direct property damage per year. At such a high cost, it’s crucial that you take the necessary steps to help prevent a fire from igniting in your home this season.
To help you enjoy a safer holiday, follow these important Halloween safety tips from the experts at ServiceMaster Restore®.
Halloween Safety: Decorations
Use these tips to help prevent your Halloween decorations from catching fire:
The traditional jack-o-lantern features a smiling or spooky face that’s illuminated from within by a candle. Placing candles inside a cleaned-out pumpkin is a fire hazard. In fact, any lit candle left unattended is a Halloween fire hazard. If they’re inside pumpkins, they can tip over, ignite surrounding materials and cause a fire. To stay safe, use a battery-operated candle or LED light to illuminate your festive pumpkins.
Using paper bag luminaries or lining a mantle, porch stairs or windowsills with lit candles can create an eerie effect for Halloween night. However, this type of decorating is a fire hazard and poses a risk of injury to you and your guests. To help prevent a fire from decorative candles, replace them with battery-operated, no-flame candles that still provide the same spooky ambiance.
Some decorations, both inside and outside of your home, can be dangerous if left near a heat source. Straw, hay bales, corn stalks and other dry materials are flammable. To protect your home from a fire, keep these decorations away from any kind of heat source, including fireplaces, wood-burning stoves, candles and outdoor fire pits.
Halloween Safety: Yard maintenance
Halloween has the potential to bring plenty of residents through your lawn. To help keep trick-or-treaters and their parents safe, check that your yard is properly maintained and has adequate lighting. Before night falls, complete these tasks:
- Remove large amounts of debris, including leaves or sticks, to help reduce the risk of trips and falls.
- Check that the exterior lights are working properly, including any path lights or Halloween decorations.
- Ensure that steps and railing are secure, if necessary.
By following these tips, you can help keep everyone safe. We hope you have a happy and fun Halloween this year!
Unfortunately, accidents still happen. In the event that a fire broke out in your home, call on the experts at ServiceMaster Restore. We’re available 24/7 every day of the year to get your home back to normal after a disaster. With the proper expertise, tools and innovative equipment, we can restore your home fast. Learn more about our residential fire and smoke damage removal services before the unexpected happens.