Whether you’re celebrating the holidays at home or away, it’s important to practice seasonal safety this December.
The Naperville Police Department says you can start by making your house a harder target for would-be burglars when out of town.
“Make sure that your driveway is shoveled free of any snow. If you have a neighbor to help you out, even if they can drive up and down your driveway to make it appear that a vehicle’s been there. Also make sure that your mail and any packages are picked up,” said Crime Prevention Specialist Julie Smith.
Smith also suggests keeping exterior lights on from dusk to dawn and to put some interior lights on timers.
Other lights to keep an eye on at home are your holiday ones. Always follow the directions for the lights you use and don’t over extend them.
“We don’t want to be like the Clark Griswold’s of the world and put too many lights on and spark the Christmas tree and cause a Christmas tree fire,” said Tom Moran, bureau chief of support services with the Naperville Fire Department.
The fire department says keeping your tree well watered and not leaving the lights unattended or on overnight is the best Christmas tree safety.
Also don’t forget to keep your wood-burning fireplace running smoothly with an annual chimney inspection and cleaning.
“And secondly when you clean that fireplace make sure that you wait 48 to 72 hours before you pull those ashes out and put them in a metal container,” said Moran. “Definitely store them away from your home or away from any other garbage cans so they prevent any other extension of fire.”
As for your furnace- remember to replace the filter every month. Or if you’re relying on a space heater for warmth…
“The most important thing for people to remember is when they’re not in those rooms to turn those space heaters off,” added Moran. “If they use them at night, keep a three-foot clearance all the way around that space.”
And one last tip: if you have a fire hydrant on your property keep it clear of snow by about three feet so it’s easier to access in an emergency.
The NPD plan to continue the A Safer Naper campaign in 2019 and are happy to take suggestions from the community on what topics you’d like to learn more about.
Naperville News 17’s Christine Lena reports.
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