Do you rationally plan your life based on your chance of accidents or do you worry about things because the television news tells you to? The statistics say the latter and this is especially true around the Christmas season when the holiday and rituals around it cause more serious injuries in a few weeks than terrorists do all year in the U.S. and similar numbers probably hold true around the world where big Holiday celebrations are held.

Trees attack

Christmas tree dangers aren’t just limited to "Dr. Who" episodes.

In the U.S. during the period of 2004 - 2008 there were an average of 260 home fires each year which were blamed on Christmas tree fires and another 150 home fires were blamed by fire marshals on holiday lighting and decorations.

The 450 plus deaths resulting is far greater than the number of Americans killed by terrorists.

Also, clamoring up on roofs and in trees or on high shrubs to hang lights and other decorations is a common way to get seriously injured as nearly 6,000 people each holiday season can attest.

Holiday safety first

Many if not all fire and rescue services in the UK offer free fire risk assessments They'd much rather meet you when your home isn't burning in the background.

The Staffordshire Fire and Rescue Service states, "Since 2004, the average number of Christmas period dwelling fires across the county is 56. This compares to a monthly average of 50 for the last 12 months (Oct 08-Oct 09).*

Chief Fire Officer/Chief Executive Peter Dartford said, "The best Christmas present anyone can give a loved one is a Home Fire Risk Check.

Some services supply and fit smoke detectors and other safety equipment free of charge. Elderly people and those who live alone can be particularly vulnerable because they may find it more difficult to quickly escape a property if a fire occurs.

He went on to write on their website that friends and neighbors should encourage elderly to make use of the services available or let the local Fire squads know about them.

Christmas offers many new hazards such as a Yule Log fire, trees, candles, and house lights at a time when fire safety is the last thing on the minds of people.

Give the fire-squad a break

Your local fire and rescue squads want to enjoy the holidays too so give them a thought when, after a few pints, it seems like a really good idea to put that motorized Santa on your roof.