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'Tis the season to be jolly...not injured!

View profile for Dan Thompson
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With Christmas and New Year on the horizon, this time of year is filled with family, friends, present giving, and indulging in festive food and drink.  It’s also a time of year when accidents in the home are on the increase.  With the NHS reporting more than 80,000 people a year need hospital treatment during the festive period, it’s important to make sure your loved ones are safe.  Dan Thompson, Personal Injury Partner, looks at the possible hazards in your home this Christmas.

“In the run up to Christmas there’s more excitement, and stress, than any other time of the year with decorating your home, making sure there is enough food for all the family, and the frantic buying of just the right Christmas present,” begins Dan.  “But all of this brings with it hazards which people must be aware of.  According to the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents (RoSPA), 350 people a year are injured by Christmas tree lights, and about 1,000 people a year are hurt when decorating their home.  If you’re using Christmas tree or fairy lights this year test the lights and the wiring before plugging them in, make sure you are using an appropriate step ladder when hanging them above your standing height and where possible keep lights and decorations out of reach of children.”

Dan continues, “Fires can easily be avoided by not placing your Christmas tree too close to a fire or radiator, and if you like to use candles to achieve that Christmas feeling, make sure they’re not in danger of being knocked by pets or children, and that they’re extinguished before you leave the house or go to bed.  Also be aware of festive plants, as mistletoe, holly berries, and the Christmas cactus are all poisonous if swallowed.”

It’s not just during the preparations that people need to be cautious.  “For some, present giving is a large part of Christmas.  If you notice any ‘Elf and Safety’ issues with your goods or toys while present swapping do not use or play with the item and report the issue to the manufacturer.   For others, having a little bit too much of your favourite tipple is a Christmas tradition, and if this is the case, of course make sure you don’t get behind the wheel and be aware of those around you, and while carving the turkey!”

Dan concludes, “We want people visiting Santa’s Grotto this year not A&E, so make sure you do all you can to keep your family and those visiting out of harms way.  And have a wonderful Christmas from all at Warner Goodman LLP!”

If you’ve been in an accident that wasn’t your fault, contact Dan or the Injury team on 0800 91 92 30 or visit the Injury section of the website here.


This is for information purposes only and is no substitute for, and should not be interpreted as, legal advice.  All content was correct at the time of publishing and we cannot be held responsible for any changes that may invalidate this article.