Date Added: 11/12/2010
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Christmas Lights Safety
Phil Buckle, Director General at the Electrical Safety Council says: "Christmas lights are pulled out year after year, often with little regard given to whether they are safe. The advice we’re issuing this Christmas is to use electricity wisely – check your Christmas lights are safe, turn them off when you are not around to enjoy them and be alert to potential electrical dangers around the home. For more information, go to esc.org.uk"
The ESC offers the following guidance for this Christmas -
Even Christmas lights need a break – switch all lights off when you aren’t there to enjoy them
Check that lights aren’t damaged or broken before use and look out for loose wires
Use LED Christmas lights instead of traditional filament lighting.
As LED lights run at a lower voltage, they use energy more efficiently and there is less risk of electric shock
Or get Christmas lights with a low voltage transformer, so that they operate at a lower and safer voltage (usually 12 – 24 volts)
Make sure you know where your fuse box is so you can reach it quickly in an emergency
Make sure all your outdoor lighting is specifically designed for outdoor use and connected through an RCD protected socket
(An RCD is a potentially life-saving device, which disconnects the electricity or ‘load’ if the current is imbalanced – which can result in an electric shock or electrocution.)