The concept of ‘safety’ permeates every field of our lives. It could be physical or mental or both. A broad meaning of safety is “keeping yourself and others free from harm or danger. It also means avoiding accidents by being careful with what you do.” Adopting safe measures when involved with any physical activity or avoiding or preventing from watching any visual media that may be unsafe for young and impressionable minds are a few of the things you do to keep safe.
Home safety may refer to the structure’s ability to protect against external harmful events such as inclement weather (rain, snow, gale) or, external attacks on the home (burglary, dacoity, vandalism), or to the equipment and installations within the home such as any appliances, electrical installations, etc. It also refers to being aware of the potential dangers in and around the home that could lead to serious and sometimes fatal bodily injuries to its residents.
A proper understanding of such physical and mental risks and dangers can alleviate or prevent occurrence of accidents and disasters. Let us look at the safety aspects in a home:
Bedrooms and living rooms
Ensure that all the curtains and flammable material are kept away from any likely source of fire such as open electrical plug points or loose live electrical wires. All cushions and mattresses should probably be of flame retardant material. Do not smoke in bed for the ashes that fall might be your own. Your defenses are low when you are asleep and therefore keep your phone, a torch and some weapon close at hand to defend yourself should there be an intruder.
Bathrooms should have enough ventilation, in case of a fire. Do not leave any electrical appliances on any wet surface or close to a water source. Keep the bathrooms dry and clean. Ensure that there are no open live wires around. A lot of accidents happen due to slipping in the bathrooms. This could be due to the oil or soap water that falls on the floor and is not clean and dry. Use non-skid floor tiles for safety.
The kitchen is a common area where accidents could happen. Most houses use LPG for cooking. This is where many accidents take place. Ensure safety by turning off the gas supply when not in use, especially at night. You never know a rodent might chew off the rubber tubing from the gas cylinder. It makes sense to periodically check the knobs on the stove and the condition of the rubber tube.
Be careful with knives; do not leave them around but store them safely after use. Never use any product after the expiry period; you might be asking for trouble.
If proper grounding (earthing) is not done for the electrical wiring, you might get electrical shocks when you try to operate the appliances. No flammable objects should be kept near a fire source.
Keep all house-hold cleaning materials out of reach of children as some of these products may have an acid base. Always leave enough ventilation area around all the electrical appliances, especially the fridge and oven. It would be a sensible thing to install smoke detectors in the rooms and more so in the kitchen. If this is not possible, fire extinguishers should be kept in areas which are easily accessible in case of a fire.
This is a two part article article on home safety. Read part two here.
Stanley Varghese for IndiaProperty.com