Your home can be a sanctuary, a safe refuge from the storms of life. But, should the real storms or natural disasters hit, is your home truly as safe as you think? If you follow these guidelines you’re sure to hit a home run in making your home a safe and secure place for your family.
Make sure that your family’s beds are not directly beneath a window, or anything that could fall and injure them should an earthquake strike. Secure any shelves or tall furniture to wall studs. Check those shelves for large and heavy objects that could cause significant damage should they fall. Make sure the heaviest decorative items are the closest to the ground.
Check cabinets for loose doors and unstable shelves. Glass bottles should be kept on bottom shelves, and not in upper cabinets. Heavy appliances like refrigerators or water heaters should also be secured. Flammable materials should be kept far from heat sources. Painting or cleaning products should be stored in the garage or in a shed, and excess newspaper or cardboard should be recycled or thrown away. Roof tiles should be secured to the roof along with air conditioners and swamp coolers. Be sure to cut off any dead or diseased tree limbs in your yard.
Now that you have checked your home and made the necessary adjustments, be sure the evacuation plan we discussed last week is accessible and add an emergency phone number list. Along with out of state contacts and other close friends and relatives, your phone list should include:
- Fire Department
- Police Department
- Family Doctor
- Poison Control
- Utility company hotline
With your family evacuation plan in hand, stored emergency kits along with food and water, and your home checked and secured, you’ve certainly covered all of the "bases" to help you be "safe at home"!