Stay Safe at Home this Summer

mother-children-barbeque-cooking family meal a4whoaSummer traditions include different activities like family barbeques outdoors, and paying attention to home safety is important. With these changes which include open fires and pools, it pays to review family safety rules with your children to reduce accidents and injuries that could lesson your enjoyment of this special time of year.

When you look at our home maintenance checklists, you’ll find that our lists always start with safety at home as your family is why you have a house, to enjoy day-after-day. While home maintenance might not be a lot of fun, it’s key to keeping family and guests safe and it’s also going to protect your home which is probably your biggest investment.

We’re working on a new summer maintenance checklist (it will be posted here soon) so while you’re already relaxing and enjoying the outdoors, we wanted to start with this summer safety checklist. If you have children, consider printing a copy of these home safety tips and reviewing them with your children, babysitters and other caregivers not familiar with your home.

Your Top 10 Summer Safety Tips at Home

  1. Keep a First Aid Kit Handy – You’ll want to be able to find first aid items and take care of accidents quickly.
  2. Prepare for Guests – Try visiting your home like a guest. Do you know where guests to park because the children’s bikes are all over the driveway. Someone might get hurt, or you might lose a bike so consider a simple bike rack behind the house.
  3. Summer Storm Safety – Make sure children know when to come indoors for lighting storms. Stay away from electrical appliances, electronics like TVs and computers, telephones, doors and windows … to avoid contact with anything lightning might hit.
  4. Outdoor Cooking – At the beginning of your outdoor cooking season, check connections between propane tanks and the grill for leaks. Only use starter fluid with a charcoal grill. Keep the “grilling area” uncluttered (3 ft recommended) and don’t allow children or pets around while cooking. Never move an outdoor grill to any space that isn’t ventilated like a screened porch or garage.
  5. Pool Safety – It’s the law so make sure you have proper fencing around the pool. That includes making sure the gates work properly (self-closing and self-locking) or people won’t close them. Never leave children unsupervised and teach them to swim at an early age in case of accidents.
  6. Keep Play Spaces Safe – by repairing all play equipment once a year. Swing seats should be soft and children should not be able to reach any moving parts that might pinch or trap them. Consider putting sand, mulch or playground rubber under swing sets.
  7. Pet Safety – means creating outdoor space for your dog to play with your children and relax on their own. This means you’ll want a backyard fence or leash that can’t get tangled. Dogs don’t sweat like humans so they need a shady area, dog house with ventilation and/or dog door to return inside where it’s cool.
  8. Bug Safety – Is a problem wherever there’s standing water so try to eliminate these problem areas. Direct unwanted water away from your home and build/move garbage cans and compost boxes far from outdoor living spaces. A screened porch is an alternative solution so you can enjoy the outdoors without bugs.
  9. Lawn Mower Safety – Tools must be respected and used after learning the correct safety rules. Teach your children to respect tools and only use the ones they’ve learned to use properly. Riding mowers are for adults or children 16 or older and at least 12 years old to handle walk-behind mowers. Pick up objects on the lawn before mowing to reduce injuries from flying objects. Wear sturdy shoes that won’t come off.
  10. Bicycles, Scooters and Skateboards – Should be used with safety helmets so create family rules for your children, and follow them yourself to avoid serious injury.  Review rules about where it is safe to ride and use equipment that is the right size and age appropriate. Bikes that are too big are dangerous and hand brakes require coordination that younger children may not have.

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About tinagleisner

Tina Gleisner is the founder of the Assn of Women Home Owners and the Assn of Home Professionals. With more than 30 years experience owning homes across the US and 8 years running a handyman business, Tina is building an online community to connect homeowners with home professionals that deliver quality products and services. She is passionate about giving women a comfortable way to learn and plan projects to protect, enhance and enjoy their homes.

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