Plastic reindeer being strung up, lists for Santa being scrawled out, carols pouring out of the radio… and a trip to the emergency room?!
While it’s not on anyone’s holiday wish list, the holidays always see a spike in visits to the E/R, for various reasons. According to USA Today, more than 6,000 people on average end up at the E/R between Christmas and New Year’s, due to product-related injuries. Around 350 people per year are injured by indoor Christmas tree lights. In 2020 in the U.S. the N.S.C. estimated 59,100 injuries on Thanksgiving Day; 39,500 injuries during Christmastime; and 46,500 injuries for New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day.
All these injuries may come about from:
- New toy-related injuries: In 2021, approximately 206,400 children went to the E/R for a toy-related injury. Be careful, when opening a new toy, that it doesn’t cut or injure the child. If there’s concern, after the toy is unwrapped, have an adult examine the new toy before it’s opened. (Be especially wary of small parts, which are obvious choking hazards.)
- Cooking-related injuries: Approximately 1,600 cooking fires happen on Thanksgiving alone! Be sure to keep a working fire extinguisher on hand, and to double-check the batteries and functionality of the smoke detectors and carbon monoxide alarms in your home. Also, make use of exhaust fans, open windows, and proper ventilation.
- Decorating-related injuries: Approximately 5,800 individuals are treated annually in the E/R for injuries sustained from falls involving holiday decorations. One way to safeguard yourself is to always follow the directions on the ladder, and to wear appropriate footwear when decorating. Also, it helps to have a friend who can steady the ladder and hand you the decorations. Approximately 4,000 people a year are treated in emergency rooms for injuries associated with extension cords. Be sure to untangle the cords propr to usage, and make sure you’re not plugging them into a wet socket.
- Christmas tree fires: Christmas tree fires cause approximately 10 million dollars in property damage every year. While this obviously does not often (though sometimes) result in a trip to the E/R, be sure to keep electrical appliances and decorative candles away from the tree. Also, regularly water your Christmas tree so it is not dried out.
The holidays are the merriest— and busiest! — time of the year, but unfortunately, they’re also the most accident prone of the year. If you, a family member, or a friend are injured during the holiday season and wind up in the E/R, consult the Personal Injury Department at O’Cathain Law Group.
Consulting with a personal injury lawyer: you can do so free of charge, and in-person or via Zoom. You may telephone our office at (201) 488-1161 or fill out an in-take form here to have a dedicated Personal Injury Law Paralegal reach out to you.
If you’ve been injured, do what you can to bring the documentation of your injury: photos of the injury; admitting paperwork to the E/R; discharge paperwork; etc. You may be entitled to money that can help you Move Forward.
Above all, we want you to have a merry, healthy and safe holiday season!