- Holiday glow or safety woe? Survey reveals Ontarians plan to decorate their homes this festive season, but without heeding safety measures -

The holiday season is fast approaching and homes across Ontario are decking their halls with electrical dΓ©cor. According to a new survey from the Electrical Safety Authority (ESA), half (49 per cent) of Ontarians are planning to decorate for a holiday this year or next, yet nearly two-thirds (64 per cent) did not check for a certification mark last time they purchased electrical dΓ©cor.

The survey found those under the age of 55 are more likely to say they never check or think about decoration safety.

To help Ontarians stay safe during the holiday season, ESA has launched a multi-channel campaign to provide homeowners with safety guidelines when purchasing holiday dΓ©cor products and putting up inflatables and other electrical embellishments.

"Decorating with electrical lights and other plug-in decorations is a wonderful way to celebrate the season, but these products can also become serious electrical hazards," said Patience Cathcart, Public Safety Officer, Electrical Safety Authority. "Taking necessary precautions like purchasing lights with proper certification marks on packaging helps keep you and your loved ones safe."

Here are a few tips for safe holiday decorating:

Make a list: Buy electrical dΓ©cor with a recognized Canadian certification mark on the package. Read the package instructions to make sure you're using the right product for indoor or outdoor use.
Check it twice: Every year, check your dΓ©cor to make sure the cords aren't aging, fraying or damaged. Avoid running extension cords under carpets and across walkways as this can damage the cords and lead to a shock or fire. Make sure outdoor decorations and electrical cords are approved for outdoor use.
Be merry and bright, but not all night: Do not forget to turn off holiday lights when you leave the house or go to bed. Even better, consider getting a timer for both indoor and outdoor lights.

You can find more holiday safety tips at esasafe.com/holidaysafety.