New Year, New Safety Checks for Your House

New Year, New Safety Checks for Your House 

December 29, 2020
BY: Lesnevich, Marzano-Lesnevich, O'Cathain & O'Cathain

By Domhnall O’Cathain, Esq. 


Ah, 2021— I think we are all happy to see 2020 in the rearview mirror!


January is a terrific time to start anew: not with resolutions (that you will probably not keep), but to take a look at your house. What can be winter-cleaned away in a decluttering? What’s that February painting job you’ve been putting off? And what safety measurements need to be reassessed? Here are a few safety checks for your house in this new year: 


  • Smoke alarms: probably the single biggest item we think of with an eye towards our family’s safety. Are the batteries working? Are they up to code? Consider a family fire drill— with children in the house, making a plan is often the way to avoid the worst. 


  • Carbon monoxide detectors: the same as above. Make sure these potentially life-saving gadgets are all functioning properly. 


  • Staircases: kids in socks, elderly folks in the house, dogs bounding up and down… we don’t think of staircases as places that are potentially hazardous, but there they are. And a quick tumble down one can really mess you up! So, consider reupholstering, if there’s a carpet runner, or putting in grip-strips or anti-slip safety tape from a local hardware store, if it’s bare wood. 


  • Fire extinguisher: Do you have one? Does everyone know where it is? Does everyone know how to use it? Making a plan now, as opposed to when you actually need it, could very well help mitigate the damage of a fire later. 


  • Poisoning: Is it just that there’s a bunch of dangerous chemicals haphazardly stored under the kitchen sink? Well, what if a child drinks one? Think about a lock, or a safe place to store medicines and cleaning agents. And post a plan— who to call, what to do— for adults if a child does harm themselves this way. 


  • Gutters: No, no one wants to deal with gutters, especially in the winter. But some simple gutter cleaning and repair now can save you a headache come the spring and fall. 


  • Cords: Are there cords on the blinds that children could potentially strangle themselves on? Removing them, or trimming them, may solve the problem. Try to analyze the house in January as a place to make safe and secure for all members of the family the whole year though. 


  • Choking: Print out and post a simple Heimlich maneuver poster in the kitchen. Review this life-saving method with your partner. 


Everyone wants 2021 to be a good year— especially after the last one. Take action in your house now to ensure it will be! And if, God forbid, something happens and you need a personal injury attorney, reach out: (201) 488-1161. 


Happy New Year from our team, to you and your family!