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Holiday safety tips can help save lives

Published: Saturday, Dec. 15, 2012 1:15 a.m. CDT

DIXON – Many holiday traditions increase fire hazard risks. PLN Mutual Insurance Co. in Dixon and Grinnell Mutual recommend these safety tips.

Smoke detectors: There should be one on each level of the home, ideally outside and inside of every sleeping room. Test them to make sure they work. Alarms more than 10 years old should be replaced; and batteries should be changed each year.

Carbon monoxide detectors: Placing carbon monoxide detectors throughout the home is recommended.

Candles: Take precautions; candles close to combustibles can start a fire. Curious pets and children should be kept away.

Lighted decorations: Before decorating, check for damage to the cords or light sockets before using them, even if they are new. Never use an indoor-rated cord outside. Minimize use of extension cords.

House numbers: Keep house numbers visible and porch lights enabled when decorating outside so emergency personnel can find the home.

Escape route: Make a fire escape plan with two ways out of the home and a meeting place nearby.

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