Home checklist: Keep family safe from burns

Published: Saturday, Feb. 1, 2014 - 12:00 am

When it comes to home safety, don’t get burned.

Sunday starts Burn Awareness Week, a national campaign to prevent household accidents. According to the National Fire Protection Association, about 350 children and teens are injured every day as a result of fire or burn-related causes.

The NFPA and home safety experts from First Alert offer these tips to cut down on burn dangers in your home:

• In the kitchen, cook on back burners when young children are present. Keep all pot handles turned away from the stove edge.

• During mealtime, place hot items in the center of the table, at least 10 inches from the table edge. Use nonslip placemats instead of tablecloths if toddlers are present.

• Never drink or carry hot liquids while carrying or holding a child.

• Keep fire extinguishers close at hand in the kitchen, and within easy reach of the cooking area.

• Check smoke detectors regularly, and replace the batteries every six months. If you can’t remember the last time you replaced an alarm, change it. Smoke alarms should be replaced every 10 years.

• Consider switching to voice alarms, which use a loud, pre-recorded and tamper-proof human voice to alert residents to the specific location of the hazard within the home. Studies show that children ages 6 to 10 are awakened more readily by voice, the NFPA says.

• Keep all appliance cords – especially for items such as irons – coiled and away from counter edges.

• Establish a “kid zone” out of the traffic path of the stove, cords and appliances, where children can safely play and still be supervised.

For more tips, click on www.firstalert.com.

– Debbie Arrington

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