You’ve worked hard to create a comfortable home for you and your family – a safe, loving environment where your children can live, learn, play and grow. But how sure are you that your space is as safe as it can be?

You’ve taken all the obvious precautions, yes, but what about the measures you haven’t thought of – and the household objects that can become hazards when curious fingers and toes are involved?

While it’s easy to protect your home and its contents with household and contents insurance, protecting your children from injuries becomes far more challenging with so many different rooms and potential risks to consider. Take a look at our guide to household safety room by room, and make sure that your home is as nurturing a space as can be.

Home safety guidelines

To start with, a good tip for household safety is to move through each room on your hands and knees, bringing you down to the eye line of a child. While it may seem silly at first, it’s also necessary, as adults can often miss potential safety hazards simply by virtue of being too tall. By scanning each room from the perspective of a child, you’ll be more easily able to identify any dangers, and deal with them appropriately.

Kitchen safety:

  • Childproof all cupboard doors, paying special attention to cupboards housing poisons, toxins and detergents.
  • Ensure that all appliance cords are tucked away, or hidden out of sight.
  • Keep curtains and other flammable fabrics away from stove burners.
  • Make sure all pot handles are facing inwards when cooking on the stove.
  • Ensure that your children are out of the kitchen while any cooking is taking place.
  • Never leave any matches or cigarette lighters within reach of children.

Lounge safety:

  • Childproof all electrical sockets.
  • Tidy away all cables and hang curtain tie-backs out of sight.
  • Secure heavy bookcases and shelving units to the floor.
  • Put stickers on sliding doors to increase their visibility.
  • Lock any alcoholic beverages away in a cupboard or fridge.
  • Place guards around any fireplaces and ensure children are never left alone in a room where a fire is burning.
  • Ensure that all windows are guarded with bars, particularly those above ground level.
  • Place plants, knickknacks, fish bowls and other breakable items out of reach.
  • Pad any sharp corners, and ensure that any loose rugs are secured with furniture or other items.

Bathroom safety:

  • Childproof all cupboards locks as well as the toilet seat.
  • Lock away all medicines, razors and cleaning products.
  • Keep bath items and toiletries out of reach.
  • Use a non-slip mat in the bath, and ensure that children are never left unattended while bathing.
  • Always drain the bath completely when done.
  • Make sure that the bathroom is free from electrical items and devices.

Bedroom safety

  • Childproof all cupboards and lock away any medication.
  • Cover any electrical items, and lock away any heating items when not in use. Remember that electric blankets are not suitable for children.
  • Keep candles out of reach of children, and ensure that children are never alone in a room with a burning candle.
  • If your child is using a cot, ensure it is kept away from any windows.
  • Never leave your child unattended on a changing table.
  • Place any cleaning products or toiletries out of reach.
  • If your home has a staircase, ensure the banister is secure, that your children are unable to squeeze through the gaps in the bars, and that safety gates are placed at both the top and bottom entrances.

Outdoor safety

  • If your home has a swimming pool, ensure that it is enclosed with a tightly locked gate, and that it is covered with a safety net when not in use.
  • Never leave children unattended when in the vicinity of the pool.
  • Make sure any pool chemicals and garden tools are safely locked away.
  • Keep car doors locked at all times.
  • Never reverse your car without knowing exactly where your child is at all times.

By keeping these simple tips in mind and being alert, you could help substantially reduce your children’s risk of harm or injury around your home. And while you’re keeping your loved ones safe, iWZYE will help keep your home and its contents safe with affordable household, buildings and contents and personal goods insurance. Call us for an insurance quote on 0860 63 33 39, submit your details, or complete a quick quote online, and enjoy the peace of mind that comes from knowing your family is well taken care of.

References:

  1. “Safety in the Home – Rooms”. http://www.childsafe.org.za/safeathome.htm. Accessed on 21 January 2016.