Home is a place to relax, have fun, and enjoy time with friends and family. You want everyone to feel safe and secure. Unfortunately, accidents do happen. Having some basic home safety essentials on hand is important for preventing and handling emergencies.
Smoke Alarms are Home Safety Essentials
According to the National Fire Protection Agency, a US fire department responds to a fire every 24 seconds. Smoke alarms are important for early detection and can save lives. You are less likely to be trapped by a fire in your home when you have functioning smoke alarms.
Fire alarms should be installed on all levels of the house. Each bedroom should have its own alarm inside of the room and directly outside in the hall. Test your smoke alarms monthly and change the batteries as needed, at least once a year.
Carbon Monoxide Detectors
Being exposed to small amounts of carbon monoxide (CO) can cause dizziness and headaches. High levels of exposure can lead to impaired vision, vomiting, and death. Unfortunately, CO is impossible to detect without detectors.
The best prevention is to install carbon monoxide detectors throughout your home. Prevent CO leaks by having your HVAC system, water heater, and any other appliances that use oil, gas, or coal regularly serviced by a professional.
Fire extinguishers are necessary home safety essentials. Place your extinguishers where they are easy to access so that a fire can be put out promptly. The type of extinguisher should be appropriate for the type of fire that is most likely to occur in the space. Familiarize yourself and your family with how to use a fire extinguisher.
Sometimes a fire may block you from exiting the house from the doors. In this case, an escape ladder is a useful tool to have. Ideally, every bedroom in your home should have access to an emergency ladder as an alternative escape route. Teach children the location of the ladders and how to use them.
A disaster kit is a collection of important items that are helpful in case of an emergency or natural disaster. Your kit should contain food, water, and other supplies to last at least 72 hours. Also include items that meet your family’s specific needs like insulin, inhalers, and other medications. Recommended supplies to include in a disaster kit are:
• first aid kit
• can opener for food
• flashlight with extra batteries
• pliers or wrench
• battery-powered radio and extra batteries
• diapers and formula if you have an infant
• dust masks to assist in filtering the air
• non-perishable food
• water for drinking and sanitation, one gallon per person per day
• garbage bags, toilet paper, and sanitary wipes
Safety Essentials Include a First Aid Kit
A first aid kit equips you to deal with emergencies, accidents, and natural disasters. It is a good idea to stock more than just the basic bandages and gauze. Make sure the kit consists of the necessities plus extras like alcohol swabs, burn cream, and antihistamines.