For the average Latina the holidays are filled with celebrations, family gatherings and countless trips to the mall. It is a fun but busy time, and the flurry of activity can often cause important considerations, such as safety and security, to go overlooked. By taking a few precautions, you’ll rise above the chaos and ensure your family’s holiday season is spent enjoying the festivities.
Keep Your Family And Home Safe And Secure This Holiday Season:
Whether you’re planning a road trip or flight, be sure to take all the proper safety precautions. If driving to your destination, check tire pressure beforehand for optimal handling and traction and consider having your car winterized by your mechanic for added safety. Stock your car with a safety kit in case you were to get stuck. Check weather forecasts and road conditions before heading out for safe driving conditions.
If you’re flying to your destination, remember to secure your luggage with TSA-accepted locks so your bags stay safe while in transit — whether they’re checked or carried on. If you’re flying with holiday gifts, keep them unwrapped to avoid security checkpoint delays.
Secure Your Home
During the holiday season, you’re likely to have guests coming and going from your home for a number of get-togethers. Be sure all entry points, including doors, windows and sliding glass doors, are locked before and after guests depart to help keep your family, home and valuables safe.
If you’re traveling out of town, enlist a trusted neighbor to keep an eye on your home while you’re away. Store a spare key in a key safe, such as the Master Lock 5400D, for easy access by authorized visitors. Stop your mail and newspaper delivery, and consider setting some interior and exterior lights on timers.
To stay safe while enjoying a fun holiday shopping trip to the local mall or shopping center, be aware of your surroundings. Park in well-lit areas, avoiding spaces next to large vehicles that can block the line of sight to your car if possible, make sure you aren’t followed when exiting the mall and lock your doors immediately upon re-entering your vehicle. Keep purchased gifts out of sight — in the trunk of your car or under a blanket — to prevent theft.
When ordering gifts online, create more secure user names and passwords for all of your on-line accounts using varying combinations of letters and numbers for each to avoid a security breach. Have your online orders shipped to your office so the delivery driver won’t have to leave them out in the open on your front porch.
When storing gifts at home, be sure to think strategically about your hiding spot to keep curious family members from getting a sneak peek at their presents and spoiling their surprises.
When decorating the home to reflect your festive mood, check lights for frayed wires and loose or broken plugs. Check manufacturers’ instructions for the maximum number of light strands that can be safety strung together, and don’t exceed that maximum to minimize risk of a short circuit or electrical fire. Keep any trees or indoor plants away from fireplaces and candles. If you have pets, take time to strategically place any decorations out of their reach, preventing them from trying to eat them or causing damage to the house.
Don’t Play with Fire
While it’s easy to get distracted when you’re hosting friends and family, never leave your stove unattended while you have food cooking. Unattended cooking is the leading cause of home fires in the U.S. If you plan to light a fire, remove all greens, boughs, papers and decorations from your fireplace and make sure that the damper is open. Never burn wrapping paper in a fireplace. It ignites suddenly and burns intensely and can cause a flash fire.