Avoid Becoming an Injured, Holiday-Sweater-Clad Cliché

If you watch a lot of holiday movies, especially the funny kind, you know that this season can be filled with mishaps. As safety experts, the staff at the American Red Cross of Greater Chicago would like to advise you with a few ways to avoid becoming an injured, holiday-sweater-clad cliché—even if you are paying homage to your favorite flicks.

Home Alone—The feisty little boy in this flick is inadvertently left alone during the holidays, fending for himself against a pair of wily robbers. One might marvel at 8-year-old Kevin’s ability to take care of himself, and you’re right to wonder. Though it make for hilarity, kids that young shouldn’t be left alone without a babysitter. Red-Cross-trained babysitters known a few tips that would save Kevin some trouble, even if they would ruin the plot:
  • Red Cross babysitters learn to call 911 if they hear or see something that they can’t handle without adult supervision. Our course is designed for babysitters ages 11 and older.
  • Our students also learn Child and Infant First Aid, which would have come in handy salving the wounds of those unfortunate robbers.
  • Lots of Kevin’s antics stem from boredom. Our babysitters learn how to plan activities that are age-appropriate and safe. Learn more about our babysitting classes here.

National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation—Clark Griswold is feeling extremely festive when he decks out his family’s home in zillions and zillions of decorative lights. In the process of putting up the lights, he falls off the roof. Ouch. He also strings together so many lights that he blows every fuse in the house. “Make sure you’re not attaching every single strand of lights to the same outlet,” said David Zielinski, Red Cross preparedness instructor. Indeed, no more than three strands of lights should be linked together. Other decorating tips: (Photo by slworking)

  • Make sure that any light strings or other decorations are in good condition and follow manufacturer’s instructions for their use. Do not use anything with frayed electrical cords.
  • Always unplug holiday lights (including tree lights) before leaving home or going to bed.
  • Place decorations at least three feet away from fireplaces, portable heaters, radiators, heat vents and candles.

Meet the Parents—What doesn’t Greg do wrong when he meets his fiancé Pam’s parents for the first time over the holidays? He loses the family cat, Jinxie, and inadvertently sets the back yard ablaze. If Greg had thought ahead, he could have won over Pam’s cat-crazy dad by giving him a Pet CPR course as a gift. Red Cross Cat and Dog CPR and First Aid courses teach owners how to take care of their furry friends during emergencies like heat exhaustion or choking. We also sell quick reference guides for Pet CPR and First Aid.

Can you think of other holiday film bumbles that could use our safety tips? Comment with suggestions! We’d love to tackle them here.

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