Security and Safety Tips
Home Security Tips:
Securing your home with the help of a monitoring service is ideal. However, you can still take matters into your own hands. Here are a few ideas on how you can further keep your home and your family safe:
- Invest in quality locks: Always make sure your doors and windows have good, working locks. And remember to lock them even when you are in your home. Be sure to keep your garage door closed as well.
- Extra security: If you have sliding doors that lead outside, consider using a piece of wood or broom handle in the sliding track to prevent the door from opening.
- No peeking: As an added security measure, keep your blinds and/or curtains closed to the street.
- Unexpected visitors: You don't have to answer the door just because someone rings the bell. If you're not expecting a delivery or any guests, be cautious when answering the door. Consider having a peephole installed, so you can safely see out without opening the door.
- Extra keys: It's never a good idea to risk leaving an extra key or garage door opener in a mailbox, under a doormat, etc. Instead, talk to a neighbor or close friend about keeping an extra key for you.
House Safety Vacation Tips:
Keep your house safe while you’re on vacation! These helpful house safety tips offered by HWA home security experts will help you make certain that you are taking all the necessary steps to ensure that you home remains safe and secure while you’re away.
• If you will be gone for an extended period of time, officially stop your mail with the post office. If you’re only going away for a few days, have a neighbor collect your mail and/or newspaper for you.
• Let a trusted neighbor know when you are leaving and how long you will be gone so they can keep an eye on your house for you. Leave this neighbor with your contact information as well, in case on an emergency.
• Leave your lights on a timer, to give the illusion at night that someone is home.
• Ensure that all doors and windows are securely locked, and that your home alarm system is armed.
• Never advertise the fact that you will be gone, especially on social media sites like Facebook and Twitter.
• Arrange for a neighbor or close friend to mow your lawn or shovel your driveway if you will be away for a longer period of time.
• Make certain that your pets are taken care of!
Essential Fire Safety Tips:
Fire prevention is the key to home fire safety. Here’s a list of quick, easily implemented fire safety tips and prevention measures from the experts here at HWA to help you ensure that your family is safe and protected from harm at all times. Please feel free to share it with everyone!
• Install smoke detectors. Every floor of your home should have an installed smoke detector, including inside and outside of each bedroom/sleeping area. It’s extremely important to test your smoke detectors regularly and change out the batteries in each detector AT LEAST once a year.
• Kitchen safety. Never leave your pots and pans on the hot stove unattended. Try to have a working fire extinguisher in your kitchen and other areas where you might have an open flame, like near a fireplace or backyard barbeque grill.
• On your way out. Before leaving home (even if it’s just for a few minutes) be sure to turn off and/or unplug appliances like coffee makers, curling irons, toasters and clothes irons. It’s also important that you not leave candles unattended, so remember to blow them out!
• Eliminate potential hazards. You can start by clearing out any dead trees or shrubbery from your property. Yes, this includes leaves. Your firewood pile could also pose a danger if it sits against your house. Simply move your woodpile a safe distance out into your yard.
• Electrical Wiring. If you experience any problems, or suspect any issues with the electrical wiring in your home, have an experienced electrician come and conduct an inspection immediately.
• Plan an escape. In the best interest of your family, have everyone practice how to get out of the house in the event of a fire. Be sure to designate a meeting place outside the home, so you’ll all know when everyone is out safely.
• Make a fire safety checklist. Sit down with your family, and make a checklist of fire prevention and safety measures, including ways to prevent fires at home, as well as the steps to take should an actual fire occur. Post this checklist on the refrigerator, bulletin board, or other highly visible area for quick and easy access at all times.
Child Safety Tips:
As a parent, you never stop worrying about your kids. Whether they’re old enough to stay home alone or not, kids of all ages will find ways to get themselves into trouble. It’s important to talk to your kids about being safe and making smart decisions. To get you started, we’ve created list of child home safety tips.
• Never leave young children unattended for any length of time
• Keep cleaning supplies, poisons, alcohol and other toxic agents locked up and out of reach
• If you leave older children home alone, be sure they understand the importance of keeping the doors and windows locked at all times. And tell them to never answer the door for anyone other than a trusted friend or family member.
• Never allow your kids to operate the oven, stove, washing machine or other appliance without your supervision
• Never allow young children to shower or bathe unless you or another adult can assist them if needed
• Make sure a list of emergency contact numbers is clearly posted
Child Safety Online:
Before allowing your kids to use the Internet:
• Talk to them about the right and wrong ways to use it
• Keep your family computer in a common room, like the kitchen or living room
• Install parental controls to prevent access to inappropriate material
• Be aware of the websites your kids are visiting
Make sure your kids know:
• ALWAYS ask your permission prior to accessing the Internet
• Never chat with strangers or give out personal information, even if that person claims to be a friend
• Always tell you when someone asks for personal information, like name, age, address or phone number
Back to School Safety:
Back to school safety, and being safe at school in general, is something that parents should discuss with their children on a regular basis. According to the National Safe Kids Campaign, nearly 2.2 million kids ages 14 and younger will be injured in some kind of school related accident this year alone. Many of these accidents, however, can be prevented—and it starts at home!
Use these important back to school safety tips, including school bus safety tips, from the safety experts here at HWA to help your kids be prepared with the knowledge to make the right decisions and keep themselves safe while at school, as well as while commuting to and from school.
Kids Safety Tips for School:
• If walking to school, take only a pre-planned route. If possible, walk with friends, and not alone.
• Obey all traffic laws and signals, and cross the street only where there are marked crosswalks, and ideally a crossing guard.
• Stay out of the street while waiting for the bus. Once the bus arrives, quickly board and take a seat.
• Never stop or bend down in front of a school bus, where driver visibility is limited.
• Never accept a ride to school, or leave from school with a stranger, even if he/she claims to be a family friend.
• Always obey all school/classroom rules
• Never leave a classroom without a teacher’s permission
• Never leave school grounds without a teacher or other trusted adult present
• Notify a teacher immediately of any suspicious behavior on or around school grounds
• Come directly home after school, unless a parent makes other arrangements of gives permission to do otherwise
Poison Prevention Tips
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, nearly 82 people in the United States die every day as the result of unintentional poisoning. Another 1,941 people are treated for severe poisoning in emergency rooms across the country.
Any person of any age is susceptible to accidental poisoning. Taking the following precautions will help to significantly reduce the risk of unintentional poisoning in your home.
Poison Prevention Tips:
• Keep all cleaning supplies, medications, alcohol, and other toxic chemical agents locked away and out of the reach of children.
• When taking any medication, whether it’s prescription of over-the-counter, carefully follow the directions printed on the label. Never take more than the recommended dosage.
• When taking prescription medication, follow your doctor’s orders and take only the prescribed amount.
• Always keep medications in their original, properly marked bottles.
• Never share a prescription medication.
• Never store toxic chemicals in unmarked bottles.
• Wear protective clothing and ensure proper ventilation when using pesticides, cleaning agents and other potentially harmful substances.
• Never leave medications and other toxic materials just sitting out.
Travel Safety Tips
Whether for business or for pleasure, millions of people travel across the country and around the world each and every day. Regardless of where you are going, taking a few precautions and following these simple travel safety tips will help to ensure that your trip is fun, safe, and successful!
• Always make certain that someone not going on the trip knows where you are going to be at any given time in the event of an emergency.
• Leave your contact information with a family member or close friend.
• Make certain that you have all proper identification, including your passport if traveling internationally.
• If flying, give yourself plenty of time to get to the airport and through security.
• If traveling by car, have your vehicle inspected by a mechanic before your trip to ensure that it is safe for travel.
• Properly secure luggage inside, or on top of your vehicle.
• Never leave your luggage unattended.
• Pre-plan your route to ensure that you have proper directions.
• Have a cell phone handy at all times in case of an emergency.
• Always wear your seatbelt!
• Confirm all hotel reservations before you leave.
• If traveling abroad, make sure you are up-to-date on all vaccinations.
• When planning your trip, familiarize yourself with your destination(s) so you have an idea what to expect before you arrive.
• Check the weather report to ensure you pack the proper clothing/outerwear.
• Make certain that you bring all necessary medications with you.
• Leave your valuables at home