Homeowners warned a third of plug sockets are overloaded
Householders asked to take care decorating this Christmas, as new research reveals many of us making home safety mistakes.
Zurich Insurance’s nationwide research shows that a third of Irish people admit to overloading electrical sockets with multiple plugs to light up trees and homes, one in five (22%) leave their Christmas tree lights on or plugged in overnight, over half (55%) hang Christmas cards over an open fire, and one in ten (10%) even leave candles lit when leaving the house.
Three in ten people (29%) are failing to place their Christmas tree a safe distance from a fire source, and while dryer trees have been shown to pose an increased fire risk, only 14% place their Christmas tree in a water source to keep it from drying out.
The research comes as Zurich Insurance has called on those preparing their homes for the festive season to take extra care and reduce the danger of fires.
Kevin McCarthy, Director of Personal Line at Zurich Insurance commented:, “While most of us have a good understanding of the steps needed to keep a home safe at Christmas time, our research has shown that many people in Ireland are disregarding simple safety precautions.
“Easy steps such as placing your Christmas tree away from open fires or heaters, using plug sockets and extension chords responsibly, and remembering to blow out candles before leaving the house can help keep you safe this festive season. We would urge anyone preparing for Christmas to consider the home risks involved, so that you can rest easy and have a great holiday.”
While simple measures can be taken to keep us safe in the home at Christmas, stocking the right equipment can be just as important in fire defence.
The research revealed, however, that more than one-fifth (22%) of Irish people don’t have a battery powered smoke alarm in their household, while an even greater number (29%) fail to check their smoke alarms at least once per year.