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Ensuring a Safe and Happy Thanksgiving with Electrical Precautions

As families across the nation gather to celebrate Thanksgiving, the joyous occasion brings with it the warmth of gratitude and the aroma of delicious feasts. While it's easy to get caught up in the festivities, it's crucial to prioritize safety, especially when it comes to electrical hazards. Multiple Solutions Pittsburgh understands the importance of a safe and happy Thanksgiving, and we're here to provide you with essential electrical safety tips to ensure your holiday is filled with joy and free from potential dangers.

The heart of Thanksgiving celebrations lies in the kitchen, where families prepare a bountiful feast. To avoid electrical mishaps in this busy space, follow these precautions:

Kitchen Safety:

The heart of Thanksgiving celebrations lies in the kitchen, where families prepare a bountiful feast. To avoid electrical mishaps in this busy space, follow these precautions:

  • Check Appliances: Ensure that all kitchen appliances, such as electric ovens, stovetops, and microwave ovens, are in good working condition. Replace or repair any faulty appliances before the big day.

  • Avoid overloading circuits: When preparing the Thanksgiving feast, it’s common to use multiple appliances that produce heat, such as electric roaster ovens, hot plates, and Crockpots. These appliances draw a decent amount of electricity and can quickly overload your electrical system. To avoid this, determine which kitchen plugs are on what circuit, and split the appliances up accordingly. Kitchen 120-volt circuits are required by the National Electrical Code® (NEC®) to be 20 amp rated, so it would only take a couple of these appliances to overload the maximum circuit ampacity

  • Avoid extension cords and multi-outlet splitters: Extension cords and multi-outlet splitters are never a good idea in the kitchen. Aside from electrical hazards, they also provide tripping hazards and can hang off of counters where a child may be able to grab ahold and pull an appliance down on themselves.

  • Schedule an electrical inspection: Before Thanksgiving, it’s a good idea to schedule an electrical inspection to guarantee system functionality. This will ensure that your electrical system is up to code and can handle the extra load of holiday cooking.

  • Use Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter (GFCI) outlets: GFCI outlets are designed to protect against electrical shock and are required in kitchens and bathrooms by the National Electrical Code® (NEC®). They should be tested regularly to ensure they are working properly.

Decorative Lighting:

Thanksgiving often involves decorating the home with festive lights. While this adds to the holiday ambiance, it's important to use caution:

  • Inspect lights and cords: Before you start hanging your holiday lights, take a few moments to carefully inspect both the lights and their cords. Look for any frayed wires, broken bulbs, or other signs of damage. If you find any issues, replace the lights or cords before using them.

  • Avoid overloading circuits: When decorating your home with holiday lights, be sure to avoid overloading your electrical circuits. This can cause your circuit breaker to trip, which can be a fire hazard. To avoid this, use no more than three strands of lights per extension cord, and don’t plug too many cords into a single outlet.

  • Use outdoor-rated lights: If you’re decorating the exterior of your home with holiday lights, be sure to use lights that are rated for outdoor use. These lights are designed to withstand the elements and are less likely to short out or cause a fire.

  • Avoid using nails or staples: When hanging your holiday lights, avoid using nails or staples to secure them in place. These can damage the wires and create a fire hazard. Instead, use plastic clips or hooks to hang your lights.

  • Keep decorations away from heat sources: Be sure to keep your holiday decorations away from heat sources such as fireplaces, radiators, and space heaters. This can help prevent fires and other hazards.

  • Use battery-operated candles: If you’re using candles as part of your holiday decorations, consider using battery-operated candles instead of traditional candles. These are much safer and don’t pose a fire hazard.

  • Keep decorations away from children and pets: Finally, be sure to keep your holiday decorations out of reach of children and pets. This can help prevent accidents and injuries.

Smoke Detector and Fire Safety:

  • Test your smoke detectors: Before you start cooking, make sure your smoke detectors are working properly. Test them by pressing the test button and replace the batteries if necessary.

  • Stay in the kitchen: Cooking is the leading cause of home fires, so it’s important to stay in the kitchen while you’re cooking. If you need to leave the kitchen, turn off the stove.

  • Keep flammable items away from the stove: Keep anything that can catch fire, such as oven mitts, wooden utensils, food packaging, and towels, away from the stove.

  • Use a timer: Use a timer to remind yourself when it’s time to check on the food or take it out of the oven.

  • Keep a fire extinguisher nearby: Make sure you have a fire extinguisher in your kitchen and know how to use it. If a fire does break out, use the extinguisher to put it out or get out of the house and call 911.

  • Don’t leave candles unattended: If you’re using candles as part of your Thanksgiving decorations, make sure they are placed in sturdy holders and kept away from anything that can catch fire. Never leave candles unattended.

  • Keep children and pets away from the stove: Make sure children and pets stay at least three feet away from the stove.

  • Have an escape plan: Make sure everyone in your home knows what to do in case of a fire. Have an escape plan and practice it with your family.

As you gather with loved ones to give thanks this Thanksgiving, prioritize electrical safety to protect your home and family. Following these guidelines from Multiple Solutions Pittsburgh will help ensure a joyful and hazard-free celebration. From checking kitchen appliances to safely decorating your home, taking these precautions will contribute to a Thanksgiving filled with warmth, gratitude, and peace of mind. We wish you and your family a safe, happy Thanksgiving!

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