Want to avoid getting hurt during the holidays? Here are some tips from a Miami personal injury lawyer.
The holidays are a time of year that you should be able to enjoy with family and friends without the fear of getting hurt. Whether you are traveling across the country to visit your family, cooking dinner for thirty people in your home, or going all out on your home decorations, safety should be your first concern. Unfortunately, the holiday season is one of the busiest times for emergency rooms.
So, what precautions can you take to make this one of the safest, happiest holidays ever? Our Miami personal injury lawyer team at RRBH Law has compiled a few tips that you can use to keep yourself and your family safe this winter.
Safe Cooking During the Holidays
Most people can agree that the food is one of the best parts of the holidays. Mom’s mashed potatoes, grandma’s apple pie, dad’s deep-fried turkey—it’s all enough to make you salivate and loosen your belt with anticipation. Safety in the kitchen should be a priority year-round, but during the holidays, when distractions are more common and large quantities of food need to be cooked, being vigilant is of paramount importance.
First, let’s talk briefly about food safety. The last thing you want to do is give everyone in the family food poisoning:
- Always remember to wash your hands before and after handling food, especially raw meat.
- When preparing meat and poultry, do not rinse it in the sink. Contrary to popular belief, doing this does not make it cleaner. In fact, it can spread harmful bacteria to food preparation surfaces.
- Do not rely on a timer to tell when meat is finished cooking. The only way to be sure is to use a food thermometer.
- After everyone is finished eating, be sure to refrigerate any leftovers within two hours to avoid food-borne illness.
Food poisoning isn’t the only hazard to avoid in the kitchen. The risks of fire and burn injuries are also very high during the holidays:
- Test your smoke alarms before you begin cooking.
- Whenever you have something cooking on the stovetop, make sure that no small children can grab the handles and pull it down on themselves.
- Never leave the room when something is cooking on the stove.
- Thinking of deep-frying a turkey this year? Be sure to set up the fryer at least 10 feet away from your home (or anything flammable) and have a fire extinguisher on hand, just in case.
You could also avoid injury in the kitchen by ordering pizza for dinner like Kevin McCallister in Home Alone, but then again, plain cheese isn’t everyone’s favorite holiday meal.
Preventing Injury While Decorating Your Home
During the holiday season, many people choose to decorate their homes, both inside and out. Whether you’re just lighting a few candles and decorating the interior of your home or putting on a full-scale light show on the exterior of your house, the most important consideration you need to make is for your safety and the safety of others. Here are some tips to think about:
- Keep walkways clear of decorations and gifts throughout the home to prevent slip and fall accidents.
- When hanging decorations inside, use a stepladder instead of standing on furniture.
- When hanging lights on the outside of your house, have someone hold the ladder while you work and never try to move the ladder while you are on it.
- Check your decorative lights for frayed wires as these could cause a fire.
- Be sure to supervise children when hanging ornaments on the tree, especially if the ornaments are made of fragile glass.
- Place harmful plants in areas where children and pets can’t get to them.
- Never leave a candle burning when you are not in the room.
Decorations really make the season feel special, but make sure to take the right precautions so that you don’t have to visit the emergency room.
Going Home for the Holidays? Safe Driving Tips
The roads are packed in late December and early January. Driving across the country can be stressful under normal circumstances, but many parts of the country are often snowy, icy, and wet, which can cause dangerous driving conditions. Everyone wants to get home for the holidays, so it is absolutely important that people practice safe driving. These tips will help you and your family stay safe:
- Before traveling, make sure your vehicle in good enough condition to make the trip.
- Keep an emergency kit in your car in case you get stuck in the snow. Blankets, water, and food are essential.
- Ensure that all passengers are using their seatbelts.
- Take breaks as often as you need. Driving while you are tired is dangerous.
- If traveling to areas prone to snow and ice, be sure you understand how to drive in those conditions. You may also want to winterproof your vehicle.
- Be sure your cell phone stays charged in case of an emergency.
- Check that your spare tire is in working condition before leaving.
- Scan the road for debris while driving so that you can react in time.
- Keep a safe distance between your car and the car ahead of you. In wet or snowy conditions, increase this distance.
You can’t control the actions of other drivers, but you can control your own. Be sure that you practice safe driving this holiday season so that you can enjoy the time with your family.
If You Need Help This Holiday season, Call a Miami Personal Injury Lawyer You Can Trust
Have you been hurt because of the malicious or negligent actions of someone else? Don’t wait for your injuries to get better on their own. Get in touch with the attorneys at RRBH Law today so that we can go over your case with you and give you the expert advice that you need to move forward.