If you’re hosting a party this holiday season, safety should be an essential part of your party planning preparation work. While we don’t want to shy anyone away from the fun of parties, we want to remind you to always consider safety before planning your event. According to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), the U.S. Fire Department responded to an average of 790 house fires that began with faulty holiday decorations between 2015 and 2019.
Whether arranging a gathering or attending an unforgettable party, stay current on these important safety tips. Be sure you follow these guidelines for a fun-filled, safe holiday party!
- Have a fire escape plan. You should have one in place for members of your household, and advise your guests about it, too. If you don’t have a fire escape plan, you can find ideas for making one here.
- Scrape away snow and ice before guests arrive. If snow is falling on the day of your party, shovel the walkway for easy access to and from the front door. Sprinkle salt on any patches of ice to prevent slips or falls. Keep in mind, you may have to do this at the end of the party too before people start heading out.
- If you have smokers at your party, politely ask them to smoke outside. You can provide large and deep ashtrays for their convenience as well.
- If you decorate, use safety-tested and approved electric lights to avoid possible fires. Check all strings for broken bulbs, loose connections, or frayed wiring before hanging them up.
- Don’t neglect food safety: do not let edible items sit at room temperature for more than two hours. If the temperature is above 85 degrees, you should leave unrefrigerated food out for about one hour.
- Your pets may behave differently when in the company of strangers. Recognize that not all animals are friendly and social with others. Be aware of your pets’ interactions with your guests and vice versa. If you know your pet might be feistier or exhibit unusual behavior around a large crowd, consider secluding them in a closed room.
- Serve alcohol with care. When hosting a party, you are responsible for not letting any inebriated guests drive after. Be sure everyone has a designated driver, a ride-share, or a taxi service on call for those who do not.
- When the party is over, walk around the home and ensure fireplaces and candles are extinguished. Turn off any unnecessary appliances and gather any potential hazards, such as sharp or flammable objects, and discard them safely.
The holidays are a fun time of year for making memories, but keep in mind that everyone is susceptible to accidents, even during the most wonderful time of the year. It’s important to be mindful of safety precautions to ensure you and your guests are safe. Visit our blog for more seasonal tips and all-around advice from the restoration professionals at your local ServiceMaster Restore®.