Sheriff Wayne Ivey’s Weekly Crime Tip Focuses On Christmas Season Safety
By Wayne Ivey, Brevard County Sheriff // November 30, 2015
PET SAFETY DURING THE HOLIDAYS
BREVARD COUNTY, FLORIDA – Hopefully everyone had a an awesome Thanksgiving and is now getting ready for the Christmas Season.
As we continue to focus our Weekly Crime Prevention Message on staying safe during the Holidays I want to focus this weeks message on staying safe as we decorate our homes and businesses.
I can tell you that we are already in full swing at the Ivey Household as my beautiful wife Susan got the majority of our Christmas Decorations up and our tree beautifully decorated.
While I was excited to see the tree go up I was a little disappointed to see that so far there are not any presents underneath the tree with my name on it.
As we get closer to Christmas Day below is a list of things to keep in mind when decorating for the Holidays:
HOLIDAY RELATED INJURIES
1. Home Fires and Electrocutions almost double during the Holiday Season while each December approximately 130,000 home fires occur that lead to hundreds of deaths and thousands of injuries.
2. Christmas Trees cause approximately 2,000 fires each year and millions of dollars worth of damage.
3. Over 10,000 people are treated each December in hospital emergency rooms as a result of falls, cuts, shocks, and burns related to Christmas Decorating.
DECORATING THE CHRISTMAS TREE
1. If using a “real” tree make sure it is fresh and doesn’t have dry needles that quickly become a fire hazard.
2. Remember to cut the base of the tree so that a fresh core is exposed and water the tree daily.
3. Make sure that smoke detectors are properly working. (We should be doing this year round by the way)
4. When purchasing an artificial tree be sure to select a tree that is labeled “Fire Resistant.”
5. Never position the tree near heat sources such as fire places.
6. Never leave the tree lighted while away from home or when going to bed.
7. This one sounds simple but when using a ladder to install lights and other decorations make sure the ladder is stable, level, and the right height. Using a ladder that is not tall enough can lead to overextending and falls.
1. There are almost 15,000 candle-related fires each year that attribute to nearly 200 deaths and $350 million dollars in property damage.
2. Never leave lighted candles unattended
3. Always keep candles away from children and pets as well as furniture and decorations that are flammable.
4. ALWAYS extinguish ALL candles prior to going to bed or leaving the house.
KEEPING OUR KIDS SAFE
1. Never place ornaments that could be easily swallowed near the bottom of the tree where toddlers can reach them.
2. Refrain from buying toys for young children that must be plugged in. When possible, buy battery operated toys instead.
3. Never leave extension cords where toddlers or infants can reach them.
4. Make sure that your Christmas Tree is well secured so that it can’t be pulled over by a child or pet causing injury.
PET SAFETY DURING THE HOLIDAYS
1. Avoid Mistletoe, Holly, and Tinsel as each of them can be harmful if ingested by your dog or cat
2. Candles are not necessarily considered pet friendly so be sure to place them where dogs and cats can’t knock them over or accidentally burn themselves.
3. Avoid the sweets and leftovers ( I wish I had a dime for every time someone told me that same advice) as chocolate and spicy foods can cause you and your pet to have a not so merry Christmas.
As always thank you for sharing this important information with you family and friends and for all of your incredible support for our agency.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Brevard County Sheriff Wayne Ivey has been a law enforcement officer for over three decades. Sheriff Ivey is a graduate of the FBI National Academy and has a Bachelor’s Degree from Daytona State College in Management and Supervision. Sheriff Ivey’s background in law enforcement is inclusive of Management, Criminal Investigations, Narcotics, Patrol Services, Public Integrity Investigations, and Corrections.
Prior to being elected in 2012, Sheriff Ivey served the citizens of the State of Florida as a Resident Agent in Charge for the Florida Department of Law Enforcement. As a member of the Florida Department of Law Enforcement Sheriff Ivey developed and created the country’s first ever statewide Task Force on Identity Theft.
That same year the Task Force was named one of the top five most innovative programs in the country by the International Association of Chiefs of Police and investigated approximately 44 million dollars in fraud cases. Additionally, as a member of FDLE, Sheriff Ivey created the Child Abduction Response Team (C.A.R.T) that re-defined the way Child Abduction cases are conducted throughout the country today.
The program was later selected as the most innovative program in the country by the International Association of Chiefs of Police and is now used as a nationwide model in the response and investigation of child abductions.
Sheriff Ivey has testified before the United States Congress on law enforcement related matters and has extensive experience in the area of Public Integrity Investigations. Sheriff Ivey was honored as the Florida Department of Law Enforcement’s Special Agent of the Year (1996) and was also recognized by the Commissioner of the Florida Department of Law Enforcement for his Outstanding Contributions to Criminal Justice. In August of 2011 Sheriff Ivey was honored by the National Organization of Victims Advocacy for his work at the national level as an advocate of victim’s rights and protection.
Sheriff Ivey speaks regularly on topics such as Identity Theft, Crime in America, Human Trafficking, Domestic Violence, and Self Defense through Mental Preparedness. Sheriff Ivey firmly believes that Crime Prevention and Education are vital to reduce our crime rate and protect our community.