Sunday, March 1, 2009

Home Safety Inspection

Home Safety Inspection
Is your home fire and burn proof? A few simple steps can save your life and the lives of those you love. This simple checklist will help you determine what you need to do to help fire proof your home. Print your checklist results as a reminder of what you still need to inspect or accomplish.
Fire Prevention Checklist
Fire Protection and Preparedness:
• Is there a smoke detector on each level of your home and near each sleeping area?
• Are the batteries working?
• Do you test your smoke detector monthly?
• If you are hearing and/or vision impaired, do you have an appropriate smoke detector?
• Do you have an escape plan?
• Have you practiced your escape plan?
• If you use a wheelchair or walking aid, have you checked each possible exit route carefully?
• Do windows and doors open easily from the inside?
• Do you have a single box containing all important papers?
• Do you keep them in a safe place? Have you catalogued and updated your household inventory list for insurance claims?
Living Area:
• Are all space heaters at least three feet away from everything, including you?
• Are all electrical cords and plugs in good condition?
• Are candles blown out when leaving the room or going to sleep?
• Are candles in sturdy non-tip and non-combustible candle holders?
• Are bathroom and kitchen outlets protected by ground-fault circuit-interrupters.
• Is there a fire extinguisher within easy access of the cooking area?
• Do you know how to use it?
• Is the cooking area clean and free of clutter?
• Do you always remain in the kitchen while cooking?
• Do you wear snug fitting sleeves that won't catch fire while cooking?
• Do you turn off and unplug appliances when they are not in use?
• Do you ensure electrical outlets are not overloaded?
• Do you clean appliances so grease cannot build up and catch fire?
• Do you turn pot and pan handles in so they are not knocked over?
• Never smoke in bed!
• Is there a flashlight near your bed?
• Are the batteries fully charged?
• Is there a whistle by your bed to warn others of a fire and alert rescuers of your location?
• Do you always make sure curling irons and hot rollers are unplugged after each use?
• Is the water heater set at 120 degrees Fahrenheit or lower to prevent scalds and burns?
• Have you installed thermostatically controlled faucets and shower heads?
• Are newspapers, empty boxes, paints, and gasoline cans stored away from heaters and outlets?
• Is gasoline stored in approved safety cans that prevent the escape of flammable vapors?
• Are paints, gasoline and other flammable liquids stored away from flames and sparks: Are they outside the home in a shed or detached garage?
• Are address numbers at least 3-5 inches, a contrasting color from the rest of the exterior and clearly visible from the street?
• Is firewood stacked at least ten feet from your home?
• Is the exterior of your house clear of all trash and dead grass?
• Is your grill or barbecue at least three feet from the house when cooking? Never use a charcoal
• type grill on a wooden deck or porch.
• Are ashes and coals placed in a metal container away from the house?
• Is the chimney clean and in good repair?
Before You Go To Bed Or Lie Down:
• Did you fully extinguish smoking materials (cigarettes, cigars, etc.)?
• Did you turn off the oven and burners?
• Did you unplug the coffee pot?
• Did you fully extinguish all candles or oil lamps?
• Is your heating pad turned off?
• Are the lights turned out, leaving one on in case you need to get up?
• Are your glasses near your bedside so you can see to escape and avoid injury?
• Are your house keys and car keys near your bedside so they are easily accessible?
• Are your doors locked?
Smoking Materials:
• Do you have large, deep, non-tip ashtrays for smokers?
• Are matches and lighters locked up high, out of children's sight and reach?
• Do smokers wet all butts and ashes before throwing them away?
References: Home Checklist for Older Consumers,; Home Safety Council on line at:; Fire Safety Checklist for Older Adults,

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