Rocky Mountain Power would like to remind its customers and the public there are some electrical safety issues unique to the Holiday season that should be considered in preparing for upcoming festivities.

“This is a season of merriment and many gatherings of families and friends,” said Mike Felice, Rocky Mountain Power safety director. “Taking a few minutes to check safety measures is wise and will help ensure a festive and fun Holiday season. The following list of 12 recommendations is a good place to start.”

1. Inspect all electrical decorations for damage before use. Cracked or damaged sockets, loose or bare wires and loose connections may cause a serious shock or can start a fire.

2. Do not overload electrical outlets. Overloaded electrical outlets and faulty wires are a common cause of holiday fires. Avoid overloading outlets and only plug one high-wattage appliance into each outlet.

3. Never connect more than three strings of incandescent lights. More than three strands may not only trip a circuit breaker, but also can cause a fire.

4. Check decorations for certification label. Decorations not bearing a label from an independent testing laboratory such as Underwriters Laboratories (UL) have not been tested for safety and could be hazardous.

5. Make sure all extension cords and electrical decorations used for outdoor decorating are marked for outdoor use.

6. If using a live tree, keep it fresh by watering daily. Dry trees are a serious fire hazard. When trimming the tree, only use non-combustible or flame-resistant materials and lights approved by a nationally recognized testing laboratory.

7. Use battery-operated candles in place of traditional candles. Almost half of home decoration fires are caused by traditional candles, according to the National Fire Protection Association.

8. Keep combustibles, including Christmas trees, at least three feet from heat sources.

9. Protect electrical cords from damage. To avoid shock or fire hazards, cords should never be pinched by furniture, forced into small spaces such as doors or windows, placed under rugs, located near heat sources or attached by nails or staples.

10. Stay in the kitchen when something is cooking. Unattended cooking equipment is the leading cause of home cooking fires according to NFPA.

11. Turn off, unplug and extinguish all decorations when going to sleep or leaving the house. Unattended candles are the cause of one in five home candle fires. Half of home fire deaths occur between the hours of 11 p.m. and 7 a.m. (NFPA).

12. When contemplating electronic toys for children, be sure to read the manufacturer’s instructions and warning labels. Note if the item is appropriate for the child’s age group, determine whether adult supervision is required and plan accordingly.

Additional details and safety tips are available on Rocky Mountain Power’s website at Wishing you all a happy (and safe) Holiday season!

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