During a disaster ordinary objects in your home can cause injury or damage. However there are simple steps you can take to make your home safer. Start by viewing each room with a “disaster eye” and identify potential hazards – bookshelves that could tip over in a tornado and block exits, heavy objects that could fall and cause injury, or reactive chemicals, such as bleach & ammonia, stored together under a kitchen sink.
- Install smoke detectors on each level of your home and change batteries every 6 months.
- Move beds away from windows.
- Move mirrors and heavy pictures away from couches or places where people sit.
- Clear hallways and exits for easy evacuation.
- Store heavy items on the lowest shelves.
- Keep ABC type fire extinguishers and know how and when to use them.
- Strap down your water heater and fit it with a flexible gas supply line.
- Store flammable or highly reactive chemicals securely and separate from each other.
- Secure pictures, wall hangings and heavy items such as bookcases and file cabinets.
- Know how and when to switch off your utilities.