The tragic reality is that, each day in Australia 5,000 children require medical attention; 170 are admitted to hospital and one child dies – all as a result of unintentional injury. What may surprise you is the vast majority of these occur in the home.
Rest assured most of these incidents can be avoided. To help safeguard your home, ask yourself the following questions this winter – and follow up today if you’re not 100% happy with the answers:
Have you set rules for your children around heaters and fires?
Many children simply cannot resist playing with fire. Never leave children unsupervised around heaters and open flames. Blow out candles when leaving a room. And smoke alarm monitoring offers an extra layer of protection throughout the winter months.
Have your heaters been checked to make sure they’re safe?
For your peace of mind have them serviced regularly, and after long periods of non-use.
Are all your matches and lighters locked up?
Do this before your children learn how to climb, or figure out how to move furniture and open cupboards and drawers.
Are your children fully supervised around water?
If you have a pool, or use indoor pools, water safety is a year-round issue. Never rely on siblings – or even other adults - especially with young children. They require uninterrupted vigilance. Remember, ‘floaties’ are not a substitute for adult supervision, and can give children a false sense of security. Empty wading pools, water tables and other containers immediately after use.
Do your children know who’s allowed in, when parents are out?
Make sure children are absolutely clear about opening the front door and who’s allowed in the home when parents are at work. Consider an intercom entrance system or locked screen doors.
Can your kids climb or access windows?
Do not rely on flyscreens to prevent children falling through windows. They don’t – as they’re purely designed to keep insects out. Keep beds, cots and other climbable furniture away from windows. Ensure all windows lock open at 9 centimetres .
Are your medications and household cleaning products stored securely?
Many are highly poisonous. Keep kids at bay by storing well out of reach, and/or with a child-proof lock.
Do your children know what to do in an emergency?
Teach them how to dial 000 as soon as they’re old enough. Practice getting out of the house in the event of a fire or incident. Again, as soon as they’re old enough, basic first-aid skills are also invaluable.
Have you discussed safe online and social media behaviour with your children?
Ask them not to reveal holiday plans on Facebook, Twitter or to strangers online – savvy thieves can gain access to up-to-the-minute details through status updates and posts, allowing them to learn when the home is likely to be vacant.
Don’t forget to let grandparents, babysitters and other child carers know about your children’s safety too.
Another way of keeping your family safe is to keep home security from slipping down the priority list. Open doors and windows are a welcome invitation to thieves – and it’s not just an issue in the hotter months. Where it’s necessary to keep air flowing in heated homes, make sure security screen doors or windows are fitted.
A monitored home security system is also well worth considering for family homes. A frightening fact is that 22% of burglaries happen while someone is at home. With a 24/7 monitored system, you know someone is always ready to jump into action. It’s especially good to know during the winter months that your home will also be monitored for fire and smoke, even when you’re not at home or your security alarm is not set. ADT Security can also personalise your home security – for instance, arming doors and windows automatically at night and setting alarms to allow for pet movement.
Now’s the time to be prepared and secure your home with an installed wireless Home Security System for just $199*. Total minimum cost including alarm installation and 3 year monitoring is $1349.20.
Conditions apply, so call ADT on 1300 PROTECT (77 68 328) or see www.adtsecurity.com.au