Nothing says Halloween like a glowing jack o’ lantern. Notwithstanding their prevalence, jack o’ lanterns can cause serious safety risks to tenants and rental houses alike. As a Batesville rental property owner, it is imperative to teach your tenants exactly what to do to avoid fires and injuries. By sharing a few safety tips, you can enable your tenants to take pleasure in their holiday celebrations without accident or injury.
Jack o’ lanterns are common holiday decorations that are oftentimes placed on porches, patios, and railings, and are traditionally lit with small candles. But, and this is a big but, putting carved pumpkins next to doorways, walkways, and other easily accessed areas can result in several safety hazards. For example, carved pumpkins can deteriorate in just a few days, creating a slimy mess of rotting pumpkin that can make stairs and sidewalks slippery. Pumpkins can, indeed, attract hornets and other pests, insects that will sting or bite if disturbed.
Adding candles to a jack o’ lantern is another safety issue, primarily if the pumpkins are placed too close to doorways where the costumes or clothing of visitors could catch fire. Year after year, Halloween decorations cause an estimated $13 million in property damage, dozens of injuries, and even deaths. The excellent news is that there is a lot you and your tenants can carry out to avoid such trouble and worse, tragedy.
Included among the ways to prevent pumpkin-related messes and spills is to reduce the length of time that carved pumpkins are left sitting outside. The longer the pumpkin is left open and exposed to the elements, the faster and easier for it to rot or attract unwanted pests. If your tenants are planning to carve and display pumpkins, ask them to wait to just before Halloween to set them outside, and then to properly dispose of them right after. This can be of great help to keep doorways and walkways free of stinging insects and slippery spills.
An alternative but equally effective way would be to have your tenants carve hardshell gourds or craft pumpkins instead rather than an actual pumpkin. Gourds don’t break down and rot as pumpkins do, which implies that they can be safely displayed for a really long time. Craft pumpkins look like the real thing but are molded out of foam or other materials that keep longer. These can indeed be carved or decorated and displayed safely year after year given the fact that they will definitely not deteriorate.
Although these efforts can aid in tapering off many risks, quite possibly the principal safety issue with jack o’ lanterns is when they are lit. Candles, for some considerable time, have been the illumination source of choice for carved pumpkins, but their open flames can create a serious fire hazard. Just in case your tenants insist on applying candles in their decorations, see to it that they understand the need to prepare and take precautionary measures ahead of time.
Tenants should clear away dry leaves and other debris from the area where lit pumpkins will be placed. They should additionally understand the seriousness of never leaving lit candles unattended, and to situate them at a safe distance from doorways and walkways. However, obviously, the best option for safety would seem to be to strongly urge your tenants to have an alternative lighting source, such a glow sticks, which are non-flammable, do not use batteries or electricity, and are weatherproof. Glow sticks can also be used to illuminate craft pumpkins, unlike candles which should never be used in these decorations.
Carving and displaying jack o’ lanterns is an enjoyable part of Halloween, but only if everything is done cautiously. Instructing your tenant on jack o’ lantern safety is your responsibility, but one that requires much of your time. If, as stated, time is valuable, then you’re probably questioning if tenant education is the best way of using your valuable time. On the contrary, consider employing Real Property Management Delta to execute it for you. Our comprehensive property management services includes important safety advice to your tenants, assisting you to keep them and your property free from injury and fire hazards. To find out more regarding what we have to extend to Batesville property owners like you, contact us today.
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