Next to motor vehicle accidents, home accidents are responsible for more fatal injuries than any other cause amounting to 18,000 deaths and 13 million injuries each year. The five leading causes of death from home accidents are falls, poisonings, fires, suffocation and choking and drowning.
In support of National Home Safety Month, we’ve listed some of the top tips to help prevent the “fatal five.”
- Eliminate tripping hazards such as electrical cords toys, shoes, and other items on walkways and stairways. Clean up spills immediately.
- Have handrails on both sides of stairs and steps and make sure handrails extend from the top to the bottom of the stairs. (This includes outdoor stairs and steps.) If you have small children, install baby gates at the top and bottom of stairs.
- Have night-lights along stairways and hallways and in bedrooms, bathrooms, and other dark areas. Put bright lights over outdoor porches and walkways.
- Have grab bars and a non-skid mat or strips in your bathtubs and showers. Use bath rugs with non-skid backing.
- Purchase a sturdy stepstool with a handrail so you can reach safely. Be sure to follow ladder safety rules, which include proper angles and set-up on solid and level ground.
- Have window guards on upstairs windows to help prevent a child from falling out the window.
- Keep harmful household chemicals in an out-of-reach, locked cabinet.
- Never leave children alone with household products or medications. Most poisonings occur when the product is in use.
- Keep household medicines and poisonous products in their original, labeled, child-resistant containers.
- Install carbon monoxide (CO) detectors.
- Keep the number of your local poison control center near your phone, or program it into your speed dial. The national poison control center number is 1-800-222-1222. More...