Preparing outdoor Christmas lights for heavy rainfall

Published: Dec. 20, 2013 at 11:25 PM CST|Updated: Dec. 20, 2013 at 11:38 PM CST
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CAPE GIRARDEAU, MO (KFVS) -You see Christmas lights everywhere this time of year.

At homes, businesses, even city parks.

The possibility of several inches of rain, could mean all those outdoor Christmas lights and decorations become electrical hazards.

One expert said there are simple steps to take to avoid damage.

Fred Elias is the owner of Elias ACE Hardware.

He says if you don't take the right precautions before the ground is rain-soaked the wires could be dangerous.

Elias says it's important to hang wires instead of leaving them on the ground.

One simple solution is to drape wires across bushes to keep them out of puddles.

It's also important to use proper wiring, like waterproof outdoor extension cords.

But even then, he says if there seems to be a problem, don't touch the cords.

"If your lights go out this time of year, don't go out in the rain and try to fix them," said Elias. "Wait until it dries out. You can get an electrical shock from water transfer. So you don't want anything to be wet, you don't want to be wet. You don't want to be standing in water. You just have to be careful."

Elias says it's also important to check the condition of your wiring.

Cords made for outdoor use are ineffective if the wires are frayed or exposed.

He also adds exposed outlets low to the ground can have water in them; so the bottom line is to just be safe and wait for dry weather.

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