Believe it or not we are in December already! If you haven’t already, you may be thinking about getting your Christmas decorations down from the loft or out of the garage this weekend. We have already seen some lovely Christmas lights outside many homes and businesses in St. Albans. The Fulcher Edwards office is certainly ready! Without sounding like a Scrooge though, one thing that doesn’t always get taken into account with Christmas decorations is electrical safety.
The NICEIC have a Christmas Fact Sheet and safety information on their website which we are going to share with you over a few blog posts, as fires are most common this time of year due to electrical issues.
New research, commissioned by the UK’s leading regulatory body for electricians NICEIC and ELECSA has revealed some disturbing facts about the safety of UK homes at Christmas. As 90 percent of Brits admit to decorating their home and garden in the next few weeks, less than a quarter (23 percent) would consider the impact this might have on the electrics in their home. The study, which surveyed 2,000 UK tenants and homeowners, found that 42 percent of Brits paid more attention to aesthetics than safety, with 1 in 5 admitting to feeling they needed to compete with their friends and neighbours.
Inevitably, the increase in decorative lights require the use of multiple sockets and extension leads, yet less than 3 percent were concerned about the amount of lights they were using and whether they could be of danger to their family. Also these decorative lights put a lot of strain onto our electrical systems in our homes.
After being in the loft for 12 months, Christmas lights can become electrically unsafe. The following safety advice from the NICEIC Factsheet should ensure your lights are safe to use this Christmas.
- Check your Christmas lights are not broken or damaged before use and look out for loose wires.
- Use only replacement lamps of the same type and rating as those originally supplied with the lights.
- Always switch your lights off before you go to bed or go out.
- Keeps lights away from flammable decorations and materials can burn easily.
- Try to avoid using too many extensions leads or adapters.
- Never attempt to repair lights by using tape or joining with another set of lights.
- Check the wiring of the plug and make sure no bare wiring is visiable.
Did you know?
Research carried out in 2011 by Home Accident Surveillance System 2012, estimated there to be 1,000 people visited A&E in the UK after home accidents involving Christmas trees and 350 people after home accidents involving Christmas Lights.
Carrying out these safety checks will certainly help reduce your risk of any accidents with your family or home do you get to enjoy Christmas the way it was intended.
If you have any queries then why not contact a registered electrician in St Albans, London or Hetforshire like Fulcher Edwards Ltd who should be able to assist with any queries you may have.
Next week we will cover outside Christmas Lighting from the NICEIC Christmas Factsheet. Until then we hope your days will be Merry and bright!