The American Red Cross of Northwest Ohio urges residents to take extra precautions when decorating around the holidays.
“As people string lights and spend time with family and friends this holiday season, we’re urging them to take safety measures and avoid the threat of fire,” said Gary Loboschefski, emergency services manager for the American Red Cross of Northwest Ohio Region.
Local Red Cross volunteers respond to a disaster every 19 hours. More than 450 of them occurred in Northwest Ohio last year alone. The vast majority of these responses are due to home fires, especially this time of year when temperatures drop and people are busy celebrating with friends and family.
“Sometimes people forget to be safe and careful when they’re excited and making memories,” Loboschefski added.
The Red Cross has some simple steps everyone can follow to prevent home fires during the holidays:
People should also download the free American Red Cross First Aid app, which provides instant access to information on handling the most common first aid emergencies. The apps can be downloaded from the Apple App Store and the Google Play Store for Android by searching for American Red Cross or by going to redcross.org/mobileapps.