Safety Checklist: How to Prepare Your Home for the Fall
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Home Security, Personal Safety

Safety Checklist: How to Prepare Your Home for the Fall

October 15, 2020
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Here at Rescu, we believe in taking the time to ensure your home and family stay safe. So many household emergencies can be prevented with proper planning, and investing in a medical alert system like Rescu can save lives in the event that an emergency does happen.

As the days start getting shorter and colder, it’s the perfect time to check your home and make sure you’ve done everything you can to protect against fires, falls, intruders, and other scary situations. 

Keep reading and we’ll explore the tasks worth adding to your to-do list.

General Safety

Each year, thousands of Americans fall while at home, especially older adults. Many of these falls could have been prevented, so it’s important to examine your home and address any potential risks. 

Here’s what you can do:

  • Clear furniture out of common pathways
  • Make sure all rugs are non-slip
  • Reduce clutter and keep items off the floor
  • Check your electronics and move any cords or wires that pose a trip hazard
  • Check all stairwells for adequate lighting and secure handrails and carpets
  • Consider adding non-slip rubber treads for non-carpeted stairs

Bathroom Safety

Did you know that the bathroom is often cited as the most dangerous room in the house for senior citizens or those with disabilities? According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, every year about 235,000 people over age 15 visit emergency rooms because of injuries suffered in the bathroom, and almost 14 percent are hospitalized.

Here are a few bathroom safety tips and ideas to implement:

  • Add grab bars, tension poles, and other senior-friendly bathroom hardware
  • Use a non-slip rubber mat on the floor of your tub or shower for better traction
  • Consider adding a raised toilet seat and additional grab bars if you or anyone in your household has trouble squatting down on the toilet
  • Keep toiletries within reach, with a wall-mounted shower caddy and/or wall-mounted dispensers in your shower

Fire Safety

Just in time for October’s Fire Prevention Month, here are a few tips specific to fire safety in your home:

  • Check all of your smoke alarms and detectors, and make sure there is one installed in every bedroom, outside of each sleeping area, and on every level of your home
  • Consider keeping a fire extinguisher on every level (and know how to use it!)
  • Create an escape plan (if you don’t already have one) and practice it
  • Stay alert and stay in the kitchen when you’re cooking
  • Check that any electric blankets or space heaters have auto shut-off functions
  • Regularly clean out the lint trap in your dryer, as well as your exhaust vents and ducts  

Electrical Safety

It’s easy to take electricity for granted, especially as we incorporate more technology and devices into our lives. According to the National Fire Protection Association, faulty or damaged wiring causes 69% of electrical fires, followed by light fixtures, plugs, cords, and other power suppliers. 

Here are some tips to stay safe:

  • Add plastic safety covers over outlets, especially if you have children in your home
  • Check for frayed or loose wires on all appliances and electronics, and/or hire a professional to examine your electrical systems overall
  • Keep cords out of the way so they’re not a trip hazard; don’t hide cords under rugs or wrap them around anything.
  • Don’t overload your outlets; there shouldn’t be more than one high-wattage appliance in a single outlet
  • Use the correct wattage; if a light fixture has no wattage listed, use 60-watt bulbs or less
  • Unplug devices and appliances when you’re not using them

Intruder Safety

The holiday season is the most common time for break-ins, so get ahead by checking your home and investing in safety measures now. 

Tips include:

  • Check all deadbolts and window seals to make sure they’re secure
  • Keep valuables out of sight; if you have a TV or other hard-to-hide items, consider keeping your blinds closed
  • Make sure your home looks lived-in at all times, but especially if you’re going out of town; if you are, consider stopping your mail delivery, installing light timers, and leaving some shades partially open
  • Even if you don’t have a home security system, consider installing a fake camera to scare off would-be intruders.
  • Always keep your doors locked, even when you’re at home

Get Help in Just Two Taps With the Rescu App

These tips are a great start to ensuring your home and your family stays safe and secure. If you want to be even more prepared, the Rescu app is here for you. It’s the fastest way to call for emergency help, allowing you to send for fire, police, or EMTs in just two taps. 

Rescu connects you directly to dispatchers so you can get help as fast as possible — even if you’re out of town and see someone breaking into your home on your security cameras, or if you receive a smoke alarm notification on your phone. Two taps allows you to dispatch to your preset location from any location.

You can also store medical information for you and your family members, giving first responders access to critical health details before they even arrive on the scene. And in the event of an emergency, Rescu automatically messages any emergency contacts that you pre-load into the app, keeping everyone in the loop. 

Invest in your family’s safety for as little as $7/month—learn more about the life-saving Rescu app, available for iOS and Android!

BE PREPARED

Protect the people you care for