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Safety Devices Every Home Should Have

September 4th, 2012 - 8:27 AM

If you’re moving into a new home, now is the perfect time to make sure it's safe for everyone living there – specifically children. Unfortunately, accidents happen each day that could have been avoided just by taking a few extra steps. Here are the safety devices every home should have. Does yours?   

Smoke detectors.  According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, over one-third of home fire deaths occur in homes without smoke alarms. Fires can occur any day, at anytime, so all homes should have smoke detectors installed in rooms where a fire hazard may be present (including bedrooms). They’re inexpensive, easily accessible, and typically battery operated.

Fire extinguisher. Having one of these readily available can save your home and your life. The National Fire Protection Association (www.nfpa.org) suggests having an extinguisher for each floor. These are best placed in areas where fires are most likely to occur, and in areas where they’re easily accessible (kitchen, utility closet, cabinet or garage). A 10-pound extinguisher is best for the garage or workshop area; a 5-pound extinguisher is best for the kitchen or laundry room; a Stove-top extinguisher is best for mounting on a range hood over the stove. Just make sure to learn how to use the extinguisher correctly before an emergency happens.

Carbon monoxide detectors.  The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention also report that more than 400 people die in the U.S. from accidental carbon monoxide poisoning. These are especially important during the winter. Carbon monoxide is an odorless, colorless gas that takes many lives each year. A detector is the only way to know if the deadly gas is being omitted in your home and could save your life.

Anti-Scald Devices.  If you have children in your home, these are a good idea. Set your water temperature to 120 degrees Fahrenheit and add this device to regulate water temperature to help reduce the likelihood of burns.

Child safety locks.  These locks were designed to keep things like poisonous cleaning chemicals, medications, or other items that can be potentially fatal, out of your child's reach. Cabinet locks are inexpensive and can be eaily installed into drawers, doors and cabinents to prevent easy opening. Consider installing them in these locations: kitchen cabinets and appliances, bathroom cabinets, weapon cases, fragile collections, entertainment center or computer cabinet, laundry appliances, entry and extit doors, outdoor gates and equipment.

Motion detector lights.  One of the first things you can do to prevent robbery, theft and burglary is get a motion sensor light. It's a great way to deter unwanted guests without wasting energy running lights 24-hours-a day. Just make sure to install security lights high out of reach, so that a theif can't simply unscrew the bulbs. 

Alarm system. While an alarm system can be pricy, if it's in your budget it is ideal for protecting yoru home both while you're there and while you're away.  

If you need additional informatin about childproofing your home, check out this brochure brought to you by the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission:  http://www.cpsc.gov/cpscpub/pubs/252.pdf.