HECO gives tips for safe holiday decorating

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - As lights are hung and trees are decorated around the state this Christmas, the Hawaiian Electric Company is giving out advice on how to efficiently—and safely—decorate your home during the holiday season.

  1. Buy holiday lights certified as safe by an independent testing lab, such as UL or ETL.
  2. Choose light strands that use LED bulbs or mini lights to reduce electricity use.
  3. Check light strands for frayed wires, damaged sockets, cracked insulation, or loose connections, and replace defective strands.
  4. Follow the manufacturer's guidelines for the number of light strings that can be safely connected together.
  5. Do not overload extension cords.
  6. Do not use staples or nails to hang light strands and do not string them on metal rain gutters, metal railings, or chain link fences.
  7. Outdoors, only use light strands and extension cords that are rated for outdoor use.
  8. Outdoors, waterproof exposed electrical connections with electrical tape and keep the connections off the ground.
  9. When hanging lights outdoors, keep yourself and your ladder at least ten feet away from power lines.
  10. Plug outdoor electric displays and light strings into an outlet having a ground fault circuit interrupter (GFCI).
  11. Turn off or unplug light strands before leaving home or going to bed.
  12. After the holidays, store lights properly so they do not crimp and tangle. This also makes it makes it easier for you to use them the following year.

For more information on electrical safety, please visit www.heco.com.

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