Hazards at home: How to reduce risks while staying safe at home

Try our tips for improving health and safety at home to keep you, and your family, safe.

27 June 2019

Open window to signify hazards in the home
In the home

Babies are a wonderful and exciting addition to your family, and baby safe homes are just one thing in a long list of considerations you have to make before they come into the world. Often, baby-proofing your home only takes a few simple steps, and here you will find all the information you need to do so.

Baby-safe homes: the importance of baby-proofing

In the early days, babies don’t do much other than sleep, cry, eat and repeat but before long they’ll be on the move. As soon as they begin to roll, crawl, stand and finally walk, there are all these ‘fun’ things around your home that your little one will want to explore. Although it’s important to allow them to discover and learn, you need them to do so in a safe manner, and baby-proofing will allow them to do so, and will also give you some peace of mind while they’re at it.

Room by room baby-proofing

When it comes to baby-proofing your home, the best idea is to go room by room and make a list of any potential hazards your baby may face. This will be individual to every home as we all have different shaped houses and different items in them, but here are a few ideas to get you started.

Living Room

  • A baby-proof fireplace will prevent them trying to eat the fuel, or touch the flames when it is lit.
  • Babies love lights and buttons, so baby-proofing your TV and any set top boxes is a must.

Kitchen

  • The kitchen is full of hazards from washing chemicals to cupboards full of breakable items, so make sure you keep these locked away and out of reach.

Stairs

  • Whether they are trying to get up or down, stairs are dangerous for babies. The last thing you want is for your little one to fall down them; even if they are only a couple of steps up, so make sure you install a gate to avoid any domestic accidents.

All over the house

  • Baby-proof corners of furniture such as sharp edges on tables, especially as these will be at eye level when your baby begins to stand.
  • Baby-proof doors, as it can be easy for them to be pushed and trap little fingers.

How to baby-proof your home

There are many ways you can baby-proof your home, as the market is saturated with gadgets and gizmos to help you do it. Here are five top tips to creating baby-safe homes.

  1. Use safety gates to prevent access to potential hazards such as the stairs and kitchen cupboards.
  2. Use specially designed latches to keep cupboards from opening.
  3. Purchase a fire guard to keep you baby away from the fireplace, if you have one.
  4. Invest in a playpen, which will provide a safe area for your little one to play, should you need to leave the room.
  5. Place anything breakable or valuable out of reach.

Key steps

  • Create a home safety checklist using our tips to keep your house safe from everyday hazards and intruders.
  • Remember pets and children when creating a safe environment by keeping substances out of their reach.
  • Make sure you have easy access to your phone at all times in case of an emergency.

Despite your best efforts to make your home the safest place in the world, burglaries and other crimes in your neighbourhood could leave you unsettled. Take control by following our tips for improving health and safety at home – you can even use them to make your own home safety checklist!

Tips for keeping safe at home and protecting against intruders

A big part of staying safe at home is protecting yourself, and your property, against intruders. Try these tips:

  • Install a home security system. It may seem obvious but the best way to protect your home when you are away is to have an alarm installed.
  • Hang opaque net curtains to prevent people from seeing into your home. Especially in rooms where you have expensive items like TVs and consoles.
  • Keep doors closed. Even if you are simply popping out to the garage or emptying the bins.
  • Keep your garden secure with a sturdy fence or wall. This will serve two purposes; to keep pets and children in and intruders out.
  • Be careful online. Avoid announcing when you are not at home and never post home addresses or phone numbers on websites or social media. Holiday announcements might seem harmless on social media but you never know who’s reading.

Tips for understanding health and safety at home

Safety at home does not stop with protecting yourself from intruders. Here are some steps for you to protect yourself from hazards at home:

  • There are a greater number of kitchen hazards than any other room in your home so focus most of your efforts here.
  • Always keep curtains, paper and other flammable objects away from flame sources such as the oven.
  • Always take care when using cleaning products such as bleach, and never mix chemicals such as ammonia and bleach.
  • Ensure you have non-slip mats in your bathroom.
  • Keep phones and lights within reach of your bed as you’re most vulnerable while asleep.
  • Keep poisonous substances like insecticides, bleach, and antifreeze out of the reach of pets and children. Consider storing in a garage, shed, or locked cupboard.