Preventing Domestic Accidents

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Domestic accidents occur in or around the home. According to the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), it is estimated that 11,000 people die each year as a result of preventable accidents at home such as fires, falls, drowning and poisonings.

Some of the common causes of injuries sustained at home include electrical shock, fire outbreak, and drug misuse, to mention a few. These accidents can be avoided if necessary precautionary measures are taken to prevent them.

Below are some tips to help avoid these accidents and keep our loved ones safe from harm.

Electrical safety: Never overload electric sockets or extension cards. Plug large appliances such as electric kettle or refrigerator directly into separate power outlets. If appliances have worn, torn or damaged flexes or power cards, stop using them and have them changed by a professional. You could also contact a professional to check the wiring installation of your house at least once every three years or less.

Preventing fire accidents: Properly install smoke alarms and fire extinguishers in your house along with escape routes and plans in case of fire outbreak. Make sure your family members are aware of their whereabouts and are also familiar with how they work.

Take caution in the kitchen: Place heavy items close to the ground not on high shelves. Sharp and dangerous objects, like knives, should be properly secured and kept from the reach of children. Don’t leave pots and stoves in use unattended. Always keep an eye on children around the kitchen or fireplace. When buying home appliances, be sure to look for the standard safety mark or approval seals and be careful of second-hand deals. Don’t operate switches if you suspect a gas leak, turn off the supply, open the windows for ventilation and call your gas supplier.

Safety with medicines: Medicines or chemicals of any sort should always be kept at designated spots; preferably, in a safe place or lockable cabinet, away from the reach of children. All medicines should be be clearly and correctly labelled. Keep note of expiration dates on medicines. Also, make sure that you use all medicines and household cleaning products according to prescriptions and directions.

Aside the measures above, you should also keep driveways and sidewalks clean, Illuminate surroundings and staircases, give your family members proper orientation about basic home safety rules and regulations and generally apply safety measures in and around the home regularly.

Kweku Asante

Ghana Institute of Journalism

Level 300

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