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Tips for Safe Holiday Decorating with Outdoor Lights 

Some safety tips for holiday decorating outside: 

  • When decorating outside, look up and look out. Never throw holiday lights or other decorations into trees near power lines. 
  • Be especially careful when working near power lines attached to your house. Keep ladders, equipment, and yourself at least 10 feet from power lines. 
  • Use only lights, cords, animated displays, and decorations rated for outdoor use. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions on how to use them. Use plastic or insulated hooks to hang lights. 
  • Cords should be plugged into outlets equipped with Ground Fault Circuit Interrupters (GFCIs). Use a portable GFCI if your outdoor outlets are not equipped with them. GFCI protection is very important outdoors, where weather conditions can create dangerous electrical situations. 
  • Do not staple or nail through light strings or electrical cords, and do not attach cords to utility poles. 
  • Outdoor holiday lights are for seasonal use, up to 90 days. Bring them inside after the holidays. 
  • Avoid decorating outside on windy or wet days.  

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updated Dec 01, 2021