Holiday Safety Tips

The photos of cars sliding on snow-covered streets are already on the news. How can you make sure it’s not your car that goes careening into a ditch? And how can you be prepared if it is?

Mouth-watering aromas will soon be wafting out of kitchens across the United States. What steps can you take to make sure it’s only aromas and not flames that are pouring out of your kitchen?

After that delectable holiday dinner (and a nap!), what’s the safest way to take that calorie-burning walk?

Winter brings its own wonders – and its own safety challenges. The following are a few of the tips the American Red Cross offers to help you enjoy the upcoming winter holidays safely. This may look like a long list of “dos and don’ts,” but adopting these practices could save the lives of people you love.

  • If you are driving, prepare your car.
    • Check the air pressure in your tires and make sure you have windshield fluid. Be well rested and alert.
    • Avoid distractions such as cell phones.
    • If you have car trouble, pull as far off the road as possible.
    • Make sure you have blankets or sleeping bags, jumper cables, a fire extinguisher, compass, road maps, shovel, tire repair kit and pump, extra clothing, flares, and a tow rope.
  • Avoid driving in a storm. Always let someone know where you are going, the route you’re taking to get there, and when you expect to arrive. If the car gets stuck along the way, help can be sent along your predetermined route.
  • Prevent kitchen fires.
    • Stay in the kitchen while you’re cooking that holiday dinner (or any other meal). If you leave the kitchen even for a short period of time, turn off the stove.
    • The safest way to cook your turkey is in the oven, not a deep fryer.
    • Keep flammable items at least three feet from any heat source, including stoves.
  • When enjoying the winter wonderland, dress in layers. When it’s cold outside, layered lightweight clothing will keep you warmer than a single heavy coat. Gloves and a hat will prevent loss of body heat. Cover your mouth to protect your lungs.
  • Use indoor heating safely.
    • Get your furnace cleaned and change the filters. Make sure your furniture isn’t blocking the heat vents. Never use a stove or an oven to heat your home.
    • Never leave portable heaters or fireplaces unattended, and make sure all embers in a fireplace are extinguished before leaving the room. Have the fireplace chimney cleaned regularly.
    • Make sure you have smoke alarms on every level of your home and outside all sleeping areas. Test the batteries once per month.


For more information on how to prevent emergencies and be prepared if one does occur, visit

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