Holiday Safety: Avoid Accidents and Liability

The holidays may be the most wonderful time of the year, but they also represent one of the most dangerous. More people are on the road, rushing around with their heads in the cloud, intent on doing their food shopping and holiday gift purchasing. Delivery drivers are trying to get every package to its destination and might be driving less carefully than normal, and people are celebrating — and perhaps consuming alcohol when they’re doing it.  We know that you want to stay safe and keep your guests and friends safe too, so we’re offering the following holiday safety tips to help you avoid accidents and legal liability.

  • Make sure that your walkways are clear of snow or ice and your hallways have no water to make them slippery.
  • Ensure that stairs are well lit and that handrails and floor coverings are secure
  • When putting out holiday lights and decorations, make sure that they and their electrical cords are not in the way of any walkways or stairs
  • When decorating inside or our, stay away from lights or décor that can break easily and leave behind shards of glass or other dangers
  • Holiday plants such as mistletoe, poinsettia, Christmas cactus and holly berries are beautiful seasonal decorations, but they are also dangerous if ingested. Make sure that your guests are aware, especially if you have children visiting
  • Check on guests’ food allergies. If you’re not sure, put out a sign labeling ingredient.
  • As much as you love your dog, you cannot predict how they will behave when a stranger approaches or your home is full of loud revelers. To keep everybody safe and reduce your liability for bites, lock them away from the center of activity.
  • Be mindful of the gifts that you’re giving and the ages of your visitors. Small children have a tendency to put small items in their mouths, so make sure that what you give is age-appropriate and that if you’re giving something with a small part to an older sibling or child, you keep the younger ones safe.
  • When serving alcohol, make sure that you have a designated driver or provide alternate transportation. This is true whether you are having an event at your home or a company party at a venue. You can be held liable if one of your guests imbibes too much, whether they are hurt themselves or they hurt somebody else. Pay special attention to when your guests are leaving, as even if you impose rules to minimize their consumption, people often drink too much when celebrating.

If you are injured during the holidays and you believe that somebody else is liable for the damages that you’ve suffered, contact us today to learn how we can help.