Blog written by Guardline.
Home should be a place where you can kick back, relax, and feel safe and cozy. Unfortunately, the average home is full of safety hazards. Not including all of the modern hazards of just getting home safely! You may feel like you're safely home when you make that final turn, but danger can lurk even in your driveway.
From installing wireless driveway alarms to poison-proofing your home to choosing the right security locks, there are steps you can take to improve your safety at home. Here are several of the biggest safety hazards in your home and ideas for what to do about them.
7 Household Safety Hazards to Avoid
According to StaySafe.org, these are some of the worst safety hazards around the home. If you want to improve safety at home, you'll need to address all seven of these common safety hazards. The alternative, serious injuries or even death from a preventable accident, are too awful to contemplate.
This is the number one cause of accidental deaths within the home. Seniors are the most at risk because their bones are more fragile and don't heal as easily as younger people's. A broken hip in a senior is a devastating injury that often leads to serious complications.
Avoiding Fall Hazards
To improve safety at home and help prevent falls, ensure all stairs are well lit and well maintained with secure handrails. Also, keep stairs clear of obstructions. If there are small children in the home, install secure baby gates at both the top and bottom of the stairs.
In the bathroom, install safety rails and secure footing in the shower area. Use an absorbent, non-slip bath mat right outside the shower or bathtub. Clean up all spills promptly — bath powder is just as slippery as spilled water!
Just as falls are the leading cause of accidental deaths for seniors poisoning is often deadly for children and pets. This is largely due to their curious nature, exploratory ways, and inability to understand the consequences of tasting unknown substances.
Avoiding Poisoning Hazards
- Add the number of your local poison control center to the contact list on your phone and post it prominently on your refrigerator.
- Use childproof locks on all cupboards that contain medication, cleaning supplies, detergents, paint, garden products, liquor, toiletries, make-up, or other potentially harmful substances.
- Don't store non-food products in food containers.
- Relabel any containers that contain something other than the original contents.
- Small 'button' batteries are a choking hazard and toxic if ingested. Always keep batteries away from small children.
The third leading cause of death within the home, fire causes untold suffering and loss of both lives and possessions.
Avoiding Fire Hazards
For a safer home, install smoke detectors in the kitchen, inside each bedroom, and in hallways. Place at least one in the attic and basement, too. Smoke detectors in the kitchen and near a bathroom should have a temporary override button. Test each alarm every month on a specific day and replace the batteries twice a year, when daylight savings time changes.
Always turn pan handles so they aren't hanging off the edge of the stove. Never leave pans full of hot oil unattended and check that all burners and the oven are off before leaving the home or going to bed.
For better safety at home, keep all matches and lighters away from children, never leave candles burning unattended, and turn off all holiday lights before going to bed. Unplug small appliances like the toaster, slow cooker, and iron when you're done using them.
Dryer lint is highly flammable. Clean the lint trap between every load and clean the vent tube at least once a year. Also, WebMD suggests replacing an old accordion-style vent with a modern vent. Those accordion pleats are perfect for trapping and holding onto lint!
Have a fire safety plan in place and practice using it regularly.
According to SafeWise, choking is the fourth-largest cause of accidental death. Small children are most often the victims, but even adults can choke to death on a piece of poorly chewed food.
Avoiding Choking Hazards
Nuts and hard candies are especially dangerous for children under the age of five. Always keep these tempting safety hazards out of sight and out of reach. Grapes, cherry tomatoes, and hotdogs are also dangerous for small children if they aren't cut in quarters or in half lengthwise. Remember, you want to avoid anything that's circular and could lodge in their windpipe.
Learn how to perform the Heimlich maneuver on both children and adults.
A child can drown in as little as 2" of water. That's why drowning is the leading cause of death among children under five.
Avoiding Drowning Hazards
Never leave a small child alone in a bathtub, even for a few seconds. Improve child safety at home by always emptying buckets promptly and keeping toilet lids down when you have crawlers or toddlers in the house.
A pool should be surrounded by a fence that's at least 4' high with child-proof gate latches and alarms. A pool cover with controls that are inaccessible to children is also a good idea.
6. Carbon Monoxide
Carbon monoxide is an odorless, tasteless, deadly gas. Produced as a byproduct of combustion, this gas is an insidious killer that slowly replaces the oxygen in your bloodstream.
Avoiding Carbon Monoxide Hazards
Always keep carbon monoxide detectors on hand and test them on a regular, scheduled basis to ensure they're working properly. Also, have your furnace and other gas appliances checked and maintained annually to be sure they aren't leaking this deadly killer into your home.
Cuts are painful injuries that can cause life-threatening blood loss or infections.
Avoiding Cut Hazards
- Store sharp kitchen tools like knives, vegetable peelers, and graters properly. Use a child safety lock if you have small children living in or frequently visiting your home.
- Always place knives and forks sharp end down in the dishwasher basket.
- Use a covered trash can to protect small fingers and pets from can lids and other safety hazards.
- Store razors, cuticle scissors, and other sharp grooming tools where hands won't unexpectedly come in contact with them.
- Use common sense when using weed whackers and lawnmowers. Always securely store shovels, rakes, hoes, saws, and other tools when they aren't in use.
Feel Safer at Home with Guardline
Guardline is the leading supplier of wireless driveway alarm systems. Now that you know how to prevent safety hazards within your home, isn't it time to guard against threats from outside your home? With Guardline, you'll always know when unannounced visitors, whether two-legged or four-legged, are approaching your home.
Our Guardline motion sensor alarm systems and accessories are quick and easy to install, easily expandable up to 1/4 mile in even the foulest weather, and don't have connectivity or privacy issues because they don't use Wifi. Best of all, they're extremely reliable, durable, and resistant to even the worst weather conditions. Contact our great customer service team for more information about improving your safety at home today!
Contributing Writer: Christie Gardner