When nature comes calling in the form of severe weather - or worse - is your home safe? There are a number of simple things you should do to make sure it is.
The truth is that most people will never have to evacuate their home or deal with a fire or flood. But there's more to home safety than simply being able to get out quickly and safely. Yet, even doing that may be a challenge in some homes.
Does your family, especially children, know what to do in case of an earthquake, for example? While this is an ever-present possibility in California, we've seen some significant quakes in other regions throughout the United States recently, such as Oklahoma, Montana, Idaho and even Delaware!
And wildfires present another tragic and unfortunate threat to a number of areas throughout the country. While the odds of having to deal with a wildfire threatening your home are thankfully small, other types of fires are possible. And if your neighbor's homes are close to your own, it could be someone else's fire that poses a threat to your own.
Home Safety is Simple
There are a number of steps you can take to help secure your home from intruders, prevent fires, and provide sufficient protection in certain events. And the truth is that they are all fairly simple and inexpensive.
Here are some tips for keeping your home safe for different situations:
This is often the first thing many people think of when talking about home safety, and with good reason. according to the FBI, a house, apartment, or condominium in the United States is burglarized once every 15 seconds. But there are a number of things you can do to minimize this possibility. And with the advent of mobile technology, the options for a home security system are wide and varied - and affordable.
Here are some other tips for discouraging and preventing break-ins:
- Keep valuables out of sight - inside and out.
- Make it look like someone's home when you're gone.
- Let your neighbors and police know when you are on vacation.
- Keep your home locked - 40 percent of break-ins occur in unlocked homes.
- Secure sliding doors and windows.
- Do not leave a spare key hidden outside.
U.S. fire departments respond to about 350,000 home structure fires every year, which represents three-quarters of all structure fires. But most all of these home structure fires can be prevented. Even if a fire is not caused by neglect or unsafe practices, resulting injuries or deaths can be minimized with the proper fire safety measures.
The American Red Cross offers these top tips for fire safety in your home:
- Install smoke alarms on every level of your home, inside bedrooms and outside sleeping areas.
- Test smoke alarms every month.
- Talk with all family members about a fire escape plan and practice the plan twice a year.
- If a fire occurs in your home, GET OUT, STAY OUT and CALL FOR HELP.
In the winter, be cautious with space heaters and fireplaces. Throughout the year avoid leaving candles burning and be conscientious of where you place them.
Yes, they don't happen nearly as often as fires or burglaries, but if you happen to live in California the odds are high that you will experience a significant quake sometime. While there is nothing to be done to prevent an earthquake, knowing what to do when they happen is critical.
Here are some tips from the public service campaign Ready.gov:
Being Ready for an Earthquake
- Secure items that could fall or move and cause injuries or damage.
- Practice how to drop to the ground, cover your head and neck with your arms, hold on to maintain cover.
- Store critical supplies (e.g., water, medication) and documents.
- Plan how you will communicate with family members by making a family emergency communication plan.
During an Earthquake
- Drop down onto your hands and knees so the earthquake doesn’t knock you down.
- Cover your head and neck with your arms to protect yourself from falling debris.
- If you are in danger from falling objects, and you can move safely, crawl for additional cover under a sturdy desk or table.
- If no sturdy shelter is nearby, crawl away from windows, next to an interior wall.Stay away from glass, windows, outside doors and walls, and anything that could fall, such as light fixtures or furniture.
- Hold on to any sturdy covering so you can move with it until the shaking stops.
- Stay where you are until the shaking stops. Do not run outside. Do not get in a doorway as this does not provide protection from falling or flying objects, and you may not be able to remain standing.
The Earthquake Country Alliance advises getting as low as possible to the floor. People who use wheelchairs or other mobility devices should lock their wheels, bend over, and remain seated until the shaking stops. Protect your head and neck with your arms, a pillow, a book, or whatever is available.
Making Home Safety a Priority
In light of the recent natural disasters that occurred throughout this last year, it is important to take steps to seriously think about the safety of your home.
Preparation is a major key and can simply mean having evacuation and communication plans in place for your and your family. It can also mean having first aid kits, food and water stocks, and even equipment such as blankets, lights, and generators, as well as the means to safely get out of upstairs rooms.
As you review these tips and recommendations it is apparent that much of what is suggested is common sense and largely simply being aware. And most of what is needed to have and maintain a safe home is not expensive or costly.
Disposing of Excess Junk
Another safety tip is to minimize excess junk in your home and storage areas. Most of us find that we often have unused or unwanted items that need to be disposed of. If you haven't been able to sell it or donate them, or don't want to take the time, you can obtain the services of a professional junk hauling firm.
Decluttering and organizing can make for a happy and safe home. Let Junk King take care of the garbage and unwanted stuff!
- Hauling services for large and bulky amounts of junk.
- House cleanouts for moving, spring cleaning, converting rooms, or just getting a clean slate.
- Property cleanouts for landlords, real estate agents, or inherited homes full of old belongings.
- Trash removal for yard waste, construction projects, and cleaning projects
Our residential junk removal services provide an easy solution for clearing out clutter and hauling away unwanted junk.
People love Junk King because we provide the highest level of professionalism and fantastic customer service. You get a no-hassle experience with upfront pricing, easy scheduling, and fast service. Schedule a no-obligation appointment, and when you say the word we’ll haul away the junk and sweep everything clean.
Being Green, Being Kind
Junk does not have to end up in a landfill, and Junk King believes in recycling every bit of material possible. You can feel good about doing the eco-friendly thing when you work with us.
We also send usable items to local non-profits and donation centers to help the community and reduce waste. One person’s unwanted furniture or electronics may do a stranger a world of good!
Our professional and insured trash removal team will show up at your home or office; we call 15 minutes before we arrive on site and we’ll give you a free estimate based on how much room your items take up in our truck. You point and we haul your items into our junk removal trucks, with no hidden fees.
Ready to get rid of that junk? It’s as simple as 1, 2, 3. You make an appointment by booking online above or by calling 1.888.888.JUNK (5865).