Staying safe this Christmas 2020
For many families, Christmas will be the light at the end of what has been a very challenging year.
The news of a new Tier 4, and the tightening of rules around Christmas gatherings, has meant that plans for families up and down the country will be changing, and those who can meet will be wanting to enjoy the festivities more than ever.
Whilst making the most of your Christmas in these unprecedented times is vital respite for a lot of people, it is important to remember to stay safe this festive season. Here are our top tips on how to enjoy the holidays to the fullest.
DRINK DRIVING AND CHRISTMAS: IT’S NOT WORTH THE RISK
It’s no secret that Brits like to enjoy a drink around Christmas and New Year, however police have issued a warning to motorists this year not to get behind the wheel after “what has been an incredibly difficult year”.
Last year, some 3,231 people failed a breath test or refused to give a sample over just a fortnight, while 1,175 failed a roadside drug test. There are fears this will be exacerbated this year with more people consuming a higher volume of alcohol than in previous years.
Alcohol charity Drinkaware are urging people to consider the implications of driving under the influence, and know the law around how much alcohol is considered too much to be driving with in your system:
- England, Wales and Northern Ireland: 80 milligrams of alcohol per 100 millilitres of blood, 35 micrograms per 100 millilitres of breath, or 107 milligrams per 100 millilitres of urine.
- Scotland: 50 milligrams of alcohol per 100 millilitres of blood, 22 micrograms of alcohol per 100 millilitres of breath, and 67 milligrams per 100 millilitres of urine.
It is also important to remember that a quarter of drivers get caught over the limit the morning after drinking, so be sure to allow enough time before getting behind the wheel. Comparison site Confused.com have a handy calculator to help you approximate out when you should be ready to get behind the wheel after drinking, but remember that this can vary from person to person, so it is always better to err on the side of caution so as not to be caught out this holiday season, whether on the day or the morning after consuming alcohol.
PREPARE FOR WINTER WEATHER CONDITIONS
The Met Office has issued its Christmas weather forecast, warning of severe gails and downpours to hit Britain in the run up to the 25th.
Met Office Chief Meteorologist Dan Suri said: “The heaviest rain is likely to develop during Wednesday evening and continue overnight before clearing away eastwards by Thursday morning.
“Much of the area is likely to see 20-40 mm through this period. There is still some uncertainty in exactly where the heaviest rain will fall but there is the potential for some places to see as much as 50-70 mm of rain. There will also be some strong winds during Wednesday evening and overnight.”
Research from car insurance company Admiral shows that road traffic accidents are more likely to occur in December than any other time of year, with the month accounting for six of the 10 most dangerous days in the UK.
As temperatures drop, days get darker and weather conditions decline, ensuring your car is ready for winter is vital to reducing your risk of a potential accident.
FAULTY CHRISTMAS PRESENTS: PRODUCT LIABILITY AROUND CHRISTMAS
Toys, gadgets, games and more have been flying off the shelves in the run up to Christmas, but what happens when what we buy turns out to be dangerously defective?
Product liability is an area of law that looks to seek compensation from manufacturers, distributors, suppliers and retailers for any injuries products cause. As a consumer, you of course should expect that the products you buy are in a condition that does not cause harm to yourself or your friends and family, and if it does happen, there is a potential for compensation.
For example, our experts recently secured £7,500 for a client who had bought a SnuggleSafe Microwave Wireless Heatpad from Amazon, in order to ensure her daughter’s pet rabbit stayed warm as the temperature began to drop in November.
After using the pad for only the third time since purchasing, Stacey found the filling inside had melted and leaked out, causing it to damage her skin as she removed it from the microwave.
She underwent treatment for her burns at a specialist hospital but, three years later, Stacey is still suffering from the effects of the incident, unable to fully straighten her right hand and experiencing painful sensations.
Unfortunately, there isn’t much people can do in terms of preventing a defective product, however if you are giving your child a present that may potentially be faulty, it is always advisable to test it yourself first, just in case.
Stay safe this holiday season, and we at Hampson Hughes wish everyone a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!