The Electrical Safety Foundation International (ESFI) is encouraging families and communities everywhere to make this Halloween a memorable one by treating safety as a top priority.
“The fire and electrical hazards associated with Halloween can be easily avoided by taking a few basic safety precautions as you are shopping for costumes and accessories or decorating your home this year,” says Brett Brenner, President of the Electrical Safety Foundation International.
ESFI recommends following these important safety tips to help keep your family and your home safe from electrical fire and shock hazards this Halloween:
- Choose decorations, costumes, and accessories that are made with flame-resistant, flame-retardant or non-combustible materials.
- Use flashlights or battery-operated candles when decorating in and around your home, including to light walkways, jack-o-lanterns, and outdoor displays.
- Carefully inspect each decoration before use. Cracked, frayed, or bare wires and loose connections may cause a serious electric shock or start a fire.
- Before using any electrical products outdoors, make sure they are marked “for outdoor use.”
- Keep electric cords out of high-traffic areas, including doorways and walkways, where they can cause a tripping hazard.
- Plug outdoor decorations into circuits protected by ground fault circuit interrupters (GFCI) to prevent electric shock.
- Never nail or staple light strings or extension cords. This can damage the cord’s insulation and create a serious fire and shock hazard.
- Use electrical lights and decorations that are approved for safe use by an independent testing laboratory such as UL, ETL-SEMKO, or CSA.
- Always turn off all electrical decorations and extinguish any open flames before leaving home or going to bed.