5 Home Safety Tips for Families

Written by Posted On Wednesday, 25 September 2019 22:34

Keeping your family safe in the event of a fire, gas leak, explosion, or other home emergency is crucially important. While you may not be able to prevent the incident from happening, you can take steps to ensure every member of your family stays safe. 

  1. Keep working smoke detectors and fire extinguishers throughout the home. Many recommend that you check the batteries in your smoke detector every spring and fall when you have to change the clocks. This will provide consistency. Working smoke detectors provide the first warning of danger in the home. While they can sometimes be annoying if they regularly go off while you’re cooking, they’re invaluable to the safety of your family if there’s a real fire. While you should always call the fire department, fire extinguishers can save your family and your home. You can use a fire extinguisher to put out a small and localized fire. At the very least, you can use one to limit the spread of the fire, so that when the fire department arrives, the fire isn’t out of control. If you live in an apartment, the management should provide smoke detectors and extinguishers for each apartment. 

  1. Keep a working carbon monoxide detector in your home. Carbon monoxide is known as the silent killer because it has no color or odor. You can’t know whether carbon monoxide is in your home without a working detector near the furnace. Too often, when people have a leak in their furnace, it’s not discovered until it’s too late for that family.

  1. Know where the roof access ladder is. If you live in an apartment, you may have a harder time getting out of the building in a fire or other emergency. A roof access ladder should be safely attached to the outside of the building and go from the ground floor up to the roof. This can be used to get safely out of the building. For example, if you’re near the top of the building and cannot get down through the stairwell, you can go to the roof to use the access ladder to get safely down the outside of the building. 

  1. Create a safety plan with your family. A family plan is to make sure everyone in your family knows exactly what to do and where to meet if a fire or other emergency happens at the house. This may include teaching your children how to dial 911, how to use the access ladder, and even how to open the window. The safety plan should also include detailed instructions on where to meet. If you have a safe meeting location, you will quickly know whether all of your family made it out of the house.

  1. Practice with your children how to call for help. It’s good to tell children to call 911 in case of an emergency, but it’s another thing for them to actually know what’s considered an emergency, what to say when the dispatcher answers, and how to get help. This includes the children knowing where they live, what their parents’ names are, and what phone number they’re calling from. While this may seem like common sense, many young children don’t know all of this information, and that makes it exceedingly difficult for first responders to get to the home. Years ago, children were told to call, and the dispatcher could see where they were, but that’s not always true now with so many people using cellphone service only or using streaming services for the phone call that don’t provide an exact address.

The police or fire department should always be called immediately in case of an emergency. However, it’s vital to take other safety precautions to keep your family safe in all circumstances.

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