As consumers and families across America prepare to celebrate Halloween with elaborate decorations, creative costumes, and candlelight displays, the Electrical Safety Foundation International (ESFI) recommends following important safety tips to keep families and homes safe.
- Choose decorations, costumes, and accessories that are made with flame resistant, flame-retardant, or non-combustible materials.
- Use flashlights or battery operated candles instead of candles when decorating the home, including to light walkways, jack-o-lanterns,and outdoor displays.
- Carefully inspect each decoration before use. Cracked, frayed, or bare wires may cause a serious electric shock or start a fire.
- Before using any electrical products outside, make sure they are marked “for outdoor use.”
- Keep electric cords out of high-traffic areas, including doorways and walkways, where they can be 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, ETLSEMKO or CSA.
- Always turn off all electrical decorations and extinguish any open flames before leaving home or going to bed.