Ergon shines light on electrical safety during festive season

Ladder leaning against roof gutter with festive Christmas lights
Image: Shutterstock

Ergon Energy is reminding Queenslanders they need to treat festive Christmas lights as they would any electrical appliance.

According to Ergon area manager Matt Hilder, taking a few precautions when installing Christmas lights and other powered decorations can mean the difference between a happy festive season and a potentially life-threatening electrical nightmare. 

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“Powered Christmas decorations should be treated like any electrical appliance in the home. If you use them properly they’re safe, but when used incorrectly they can become potentially deadly hazards,” he said. 

“Before installing Christmas lights, check that wires, fittings and lights are in good working order and if they appear to be faulty or you have concerns, either have them checked and repaired by a qualified technician or simply throw them out.

“Make sure you only use lights marked for outdoor use outside the home and don’t overload power points when running multiple devices.

“When you’re installing lights outside remember to Look Up and Live – never place them near the powerline that feeds your home from the power pole on the street.”

Hilder also recommended that people only buy powered decorations that are of high quality from known retailers and pack them away safely after the festive season.

“Our crews have seen people buy Christmas lights that are faulty right out of the box—some with exposed 240V wires,” he said.

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“So, when purchasing any powered decoration, always buy from reputable retailers and keep away from cheap ones that don’t comply with Australian standards.

“Finally, to ensure your Christmas lights are in good condition for next year, it’s best to pack them neatly away from moisture or where vermin such as mice can’t damage them.”

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