As the festive season approaches our thoughts are often diverted from the mundane tasks of work and injuries are far from our mind, however Christmas has its own unique injury statistics. The four (4) most common being:
Burns: Burns happen too often during the festive season, from kitchen accidents through to candles and accidental fires from BBQ’s, spits and open fires. To prevent burns when cooking use kitchen mitts, never leave cooking food unattended, and that also goes for candles. Make sure you don’t overload power points particularly around natural timber Christmas trees.
Falls: Falls are very common at Christmas due to our desire to have the biggest and best decorated trees and our houses covered with fairy lights. Statistically Emergency Departments treat over 17,000 falls nationally over a 10-day period. To prevent falls use ladders correctly, use spotters when working at heights, and decorate trees and houses when sober.
Asphyxiation: With the amount of food being ingested and the small trinkets that kids get their hands on, it’s no wonder that asphyxiation is one of the biggest injuries during the holidays. Asphyxiation is a serious concern for families with small children and caution should be taken to make sure all your holiday decorations are baby-proofed. As tempting as it is to wolf down those holiday meals, make sure you take your time to chew and swallow properly so you don’t choke on your food.
Car Accidents: Traditionally the Christmas/New Year period demonstrates the highest levels of accidents and fatalities with the Police forces throughout the country focussing on the road safety campaign. While we may well have heeded the message of drink-driving, fatigue is also a catalyst for serious injuries and fatalities. To overcome these issues, use the 2/10 principal (for every 2 hours of driving take 10 minutes break away from the car). Remember to drink ample hydrating fluids and share the driving tasks with another person.
Remember these tips and take care over the holiday period to avoid becoming a statistic
Ken Barlow, WHS Manager