Preventing a Fa, La, La, La Fall After Christmas
Christmas is over and the New Year has just begun. As you set your sights on achieving your goals for the year, make sure not to lose sight of safety as you take down your Christmas decorations. Following these suggestions for preventing falls will help ensure 2020 doesn’t start with a trip to the emergency room.
- Check your ladder. Inspect wood, fiberglass, and aluminum ladders for warping, cracks, and damaged locks or other components. Discard your ladder if it cannot be properly repaired.
- Place the ladder on solid ground. Never position a ladder on gravel, mud, ice, or snow. Make sure to position and secure the ladder so that it won’t slip out from under you.
- Set the ladder at the right angle. For most ladders, this is 1/4 of the working length of the ladder or a 75-degree angle.
- Use a 3-point contact. Always keep two hands and a foot, or two feet and a hand on the ladder.
- Use the right-sized ladder. If the ladder is too short, do not attempt to increase its height by placing it on a box, barrel, log, etc. Further, never overload the ladder and never step on the top rung.
- Wait for a warm day. Wait to remove exterior decor until the snow and ice have melted from your roof and gutters.
- Wear sturdy shoes with solid tread. Sturdy shoes will provide support for your ankles as you climb up and down the ladder. The solid tread will ensure a firm footing as you climb the ladder and haul decorations into the garage.
- Disconnect the cord. Never attempt to remove Christmas lights still plugged into the home or generator.
- Take it slow. There is no need to rush, and taking your time will help you stay focused and avoid mistakes.
- Drain the generator. If you have used a power generator, make sure that you remove the fuel in the tank. Properly store extra fuel in appropriate containers and within a well-ventilated garage or storage shed.
- Recycle the tree and wreaths. If you used natural trees and wreaths, take these to a nearby recycling facility. These dry out quickly in Colorado’s climate and discarding them removes a significant fire risk on your property.
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