An Apartment Building

Safety During the Holidays

December 14, 2015
Holidays are viewed as a time filled with family, friends and good cheer, but they can also be full of extra hazards.
Parking Lot Safety
When out shopping, be observant of your surroundings. Avoid parking in isolated areas. Also, avoid parking next to vans, trucks with camper shells or cars with tinted windows. At this time of the year, con-artists may try various methods of distracting you with the intention of taking your money or belongings. If someone makes you uncomfortable or the situation doesn't seem right, then trust your instincts.
ATM Skimmers
Use ATM machines under video surveillance or inside of a bank lobby. They're less likely to be tampered with. Pay attention to what the card reader and keypad normally look like on the ATMs you most frequent. Pull on the card slot to see if the ATM moves or seems loose. Also, some thieves install cameras on the light above the keypad to record your pin number. Feel the top for anything protruding that could be a camera. A fake keypad can also be installed to record pin numbers, also wiggle the keypad to see if it feels loose. Call the customer service number on the ATM immediately if a machine appears suspicious or if it does not function properly.
A common cause of fire during the holidays is candles. Always blow out candles before you leave the room. Store matches and lighters out of children's reach. Never carry a lit candle from one room to another.
Inspect all of your electric lights for damage or wear. Check extension cords and make sure that you do not connect more lights than is recommended.
Hang your stockings with care by keeping them away from flames. Decorations, including your tree, should be at least three feet away from fireplaces, radiators and other heat sources. Take the time to have your chimney cleaned and inspected. Finally, make sure that your smoke alarms are working and that your family knows what to do in case of a fire.