When you see a glowing jack o’ lantern, then you know it’s Halloween. But despite their ubiquitousness during this season, jack o’ lanterns can pose serious safety risks to tenants and rental houses alike. As a Jenks rental property owner, it’s important to advise your tenants about how to avoid fires and injuries. By sharing a few safety tips, your tenants can continue enjoying their holiday celebrations without accident or injury.
Jack o’ lanterns are common holiday decorations made from hollowed pumpkins. They empty it out and carve a spooky image (usually a face) on the rind, exposing the hollow interior. Traditionally, they are lit with small candles to give it that eerie flickering look. Then they are placed on porches, patios, and railings for the whole neighborhood to see. Now, they just can’t be placed anywhere you like. If you place carved pumpkins next to doorways, walkways, and other easily accessed areas, you’re basically setting up several safety hazards. An example of this is that carved pumpkins can deteriorate in just a few days, creating a slimy mess of rotting pumpkin that can make stairs and sidewalks slippery. Pumpkins have a tendency to attract hornets and other pests, insects that will sting or bite if disturbed.
Adding candles to a jack o’ lantern is another safety issue. This is a very real possibility if the pumpkins are placed too close to doorways where the costumes or clothing of visitors could catch fire. You can expect that every year, Halloween decorations will cause an estimated $13 million in property damage, dozens of injuries, and even deaths. Fortunately, there is plenty that you and your tenants can do in advance to avoid such a tragedy.
A good way to prevent pumpkin-related messes and spills is to take into account the length of time that carved pumpkins are left sitting outside. The pumpkin will begin to rot or attract unwanted pests the longer it is left outside, exposed to the elements. Encourage your tenants to wait as long as they can before they carve and display pumpkins, and then, just before Halloween, to set them outside. After the holiday is over they can properly dispose of them right away. This helps keep stinging insects away from the doorways and walkways and also reduces the possibility of slippery spills.
There are other options that you can suggest to your clients. They can skip the real pumpkin and go carve hardshell gourds or craft pumpkins instead. This is because gourds don’t break down and rot as pumpkins do. This means they can be safely placed on display for a longer period. Craft pumpkins look like the real thing but last longer since they are made of foam or other materials. And since they’re made out of non-biodegradable material, they can be carved or decorated and displayed safely year after year without having to replace them.
Many risks can be avoided by following these measures. Just don’t forget that the biggest safety issue with jack o’ lanterns is when they are lit. Candles, for the longest time, have been the illumination source of choice for carved pumpkins, however, their open flames can create a serious fire hazard. In case that your tenants are preparing to make use of candles in their decorations, make sure that they understand that they need to take precautionary measures.
Tenants should clear away dry leaves and other debris from the area where lit pumpkins will be placed. They should grasp the significance of never leaving lit candles unattended, and to position them at a safe distance from doorways and walkways. To make sure they stay safe, they can always go for an alternative lighting source, such as 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 it is done properly and safely. Educating your tenant on jack o’ lantern safety is a significantly important task, but it demands your time. Many property owners feel that tenant education isn’t a good use of their time since time is a valuable commodity. On the contrary, think about working with Real Property Management Tulsa to carry it out for you. Our comprehensive property management services include important safety advice to your tenants, enabling you to ensure that they and your property are free from injury and fire hazards. To know more concerning what we can give Jenks property owners like you, contact us today.
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