Winter Safety Tips for the Holidays

Dec 14, 2023

illustration of an indigenous youth walking in hand with elder in the winter time.

Essential winter safety tips to help you enjoy an accident-free holiday season! Learn how to safeguard your home, entertain safely, and care for yourself and others during the winter holiday. Read the full article and start practicing winter safety.

watercolour version of a christmas tree

How to decorate your home with care:

  • Keep your Christmas tree at least 3-feet away from any heat source (fireplaces, radiators, candles, heat vents, lights).
  • Make sure the Christmas tree is not blocking an exit.
  • If you have a live tree, be sure to add water to your tree stand daily.
  • Never use lit candles to decorate your Christmas tree or garland.
  • Choose decorations that are flame resistant or flame retardant.
  • Use clips, not nails, to hang lights so the cords do not get damaged.
  • Keep decorations away from windows and doors.
a watercolour illustration of a christmas sugar cookie shaped like a deer.

How to safely entertain during holiday gatherings:

watercolour illustration of wood stove

How to heat your home safely:

watercolour illustration of a big polar bear in a sweater cuddling a smaller one in a sweater

How to take care of yourself and others:

  • Check on your Elders and neighbours frequently.
  • Spend time with family and friends.
  • Clear house numbers so they’re easy to find in case of an emergency.
  • Shovel walks and driveways.
  • Bring food and medicine to others if you have extra to spare.
  • Reach out to loved ones for support.
a watercolour image of a christmas candle

Before leaving your home or heading to bed:

  • Blow out lit candles.
  • Turn off all light strings and decorations, especially ones near the Christmas tree.

Winter Holiday Fire Facts:

  • One-in-three home decoration fires are started by candles.
  • More than two of every five decoration fires happens because decorations are placed too close to a heat source.
  • One-in-three home Christmas tree fires are caused by electrical problems.
  • One-in-five tree fires is caused by a heat source too close to the tree.

Visit our Winter Fire Safety webpage for more safety tips.

Cover artwork created by using one of Michelle Buchholz’s illustrations.