Tips offered on avoiding common, costly holiday mishaps

‘Tis the season of joy but also common mishaps that can dampen your holidays, especially if you are without adequate insurance protection. Ohio Department of Insurance director Jillian Froment is sharing how to avert danger and assess your insurance protection.

“First and foremost review your insurance and evaluate the appropriate coverage amounts with an agent,” Froment said. “The other crucial part is to use common sense and be patient during this busy time of year to help avoid the risk of injury and property damage.”

Common holiday mishaps, ways to avoid them and insurance considerations:

Cooking and candle fires 

  • Damage caused by fire increases in winter. Avoid distractions and slow it down when cooking. Lit candles are festive but can start a fire if located near fabric or left unattended.  Be careful with decorations, power strips, and anything electrical. They can overheat if not used properly, or increase fire risk if placed close to flammable decorations.
  • A standard homeowners insurance policy covers your home and belongings destroyed by fire subject to your policy limits and a deductible. Generally, the policy provides additional living expenses if your residence is uninhabitable. A renters policy insures your contents and also provides additional living expenses.
Holiday gifts and decorations theft
  • Those presents in your vehicle or shipped to your doorstep can end up in the hands of the wrong recipient: a thief. Keep purchased items out of plain view and make special arrangements for deliveries.  Do not leave your belongings unattended when out shopping and celebrating.
  • Standard homeowners and renters insurance policies provide coverage for theft from your vehicle and home, subject to your policy limits and a deductible.
Visitor falling on icy driveway or walkway 
  • Maintain a walking area with salt and snow shoveling. Remind your guests to be careful.
  • A standard homeowners policy can provide limited payment when your guest needs medical attention. The policy provides liability coverage should the guest seek compensation for additional damages.

Ohioans with insurance questions can contact the Ohio Department of Insurance at 1-800-686-1526 and visit for information.

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