Peak Preparedness: What Safety Measures Your Home Should Have

Emergencies can happen at any time. By preparing your home for some worst-case scenarios, you can prevent damage or serious injury. Keep your family safe and make sure everyone knows the rules and safety measures you have in place. Here are some good ideas to check out as you prepare.

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Smoke Detector

All homes should have smoke detectors on every level. The best detectors are photoelectric, and can quickly detect fires that are at just the smoldering stage. The extra time to get to safety can mean the difference between life and death. 

Carbon Monoxide Detector
Carbon monoxide is one of the primary causes of accidental poisoning in U.S. homes. Detectors keep you safer by alerting you when concentrations of this deadly, invisible gas rise.

To make sure they work as intended, place carbon monoxide detectors in or close to bedrooms and on all levels of the home. They should be installed either on the ceiling or near the ceiling, and you should test them monthly. All detectors should have a battery backup in case of power failure. 

Fire Extinguisher
Fire extinguishers can put out small fires before they turn into a major disaster. Keep at least one in the kitchen, and make sure the extinguisher is rated for all kinds of fires. Everyone in the home should be taught how to use it in an emergency, and be re-taught every year.

Fireplace Safety Supplies

If your home has a fireplace, make sure you keep it clean and maintained and that you have access to a fireplace supplier that offers additional safety supplies such as safety screens and stovepipe thermometers to monitor the temperature in the flue.

The chimney is one of the most common sources of house fires so keeping yours clean and well-maintained is key to saving lives and property.

Escape Ladder
Equip your multilevel home with escape ladders in each upper-story bedroom. If residents need to exit the home quickly, the ladder may be the only means of escape. 

Hot Water Heater Pressure Relief Valve
These valves prevent the water heater from blowing up. In high temperatures or high pressure, the valve opens automatically to release pressure. If your water heater is not equipped with this safety device, purchase a new one with better technology.

Home Alarm System
An alarm system helps protect your home from burglary and unwelcome intruders. Alarm systems are often equipped with panic buttons you can use in other situations to summon help quickly.

Disaster Kit
Prepare a disaster kit containing medical supplies, emergency lighting, and enough food and water for everyone to survive for at least three days. Keep the kit in an accessible area, such as a hall closet.

When it comes to emergency preparation, it is difficult to over prepare. When you detect a potential safety hazard or when you think of more you could do to keep your home and family safe, take care of it as soon as you can. Emergencies don’t wait for a convenient time. 

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11 thoughts on “Peak Preparedness: What Safety Measures Your Home Should Have”

  1. I’d add battery backed up LED lighting.. inside and out .. They will run for quite a while w/o aid on battery .. working on getting some to be exclusively 12 or 24 VDC. You can change with the grid or solar and battery when it’s not there. same for most safety equipment really. I can’t tell you how many times I have seen detection equipment off of the house power only. The first two things you lose in a big event is power and water.. so a fire starts … then what ? bet yo can say is you’ll be warm for a few minutes.

  2. I have at least one loaded firearm securely concealed in each room of my house and in every outbuilding. I consider them a prime safety measure.

    In addition to those extinguishers inside the house, we have large fire extinguishers on the porch and in and outside the shop. I’ve used a dry powder extinguisher on an uncontrolled fire and was amazed how well it worked. You might have one of the small 3-4″ diameter extinguishers in the kitchen but a large sized one of 2-3 gallons is most useful for larger fires.


    • I’m looking at adding some “Cold Fire” extinguishers for the vehicles, shop and kitchen. Not sure if the reviews are all hype or not. I think these would be good for immediate reaction where a person may be in danger of burns such as vehicle or cooking fire. We still have the regular extinguishers around for regular fire fighting.

    • Good points PR, since moving to Texas I had forgotten about pre-deployment of critical counter threat assets. My best friend and my superior had them in every room, he trusted me enough to show me. His wife had hers too. We buried him with full military Honors 6 years ago. Greatest compliment he gave was that “If he needed someone to ride shotgun, he have would me be it, because he knew how I think and assess”.

  3. Like Panhandle Rancher, we hide weapons throughout our home. While many security experts recommend using ammunition that WON’T go through sheet rock or light doors, I think the opposite. I may want to penetrate barriers in order to deal with potential threats on the other side. You must be aware of the direction you are shooting and the location of others in the house! Of course, part of preparing for crisis and disaster is stocking ammunition, which is flammable and explosive. Fire extinguishers are vital! Make serious consideration of where you put the fire extinguishers. If you place them too close to the ammo, you may NOT reach them before heat or flames make them inaccessible.

    • You know some of the guys I shoot with and I stagger rounds in our mags ..
      Hollow point, ball, hallow point, ball etc our idea being .. the first round is the only one you want to be perfect .. after that is gets more complicated. Second mag is all either hot or ball.. I’ve talked to other folks that want two or three hollow points before ball .. depending on how they train .. double tap, two center open top.. etc .. whatever makes sense to them. I’m not advocating one or the other loads.. I’m wondering now whether the same thing might be useful for in home protection.. subsonic.. etc etc .. I guess you could load mags for institutional protection .. maybe use colored tape like they do for blanks. or maybe I am just over thinking it.. I do that.. I like it Irish-7

      • Thanks, goinggray58! My EDC is a Smith & Wesson Model 457 .45 ACP. I generally have 3 additional magazines on me. I load hollow point, ball, hollow point, ball, etc. in the weapon and one of the spare mags. In the other 2 magazines, I have all ball in one and all hollow point in the other. Like you said, I have a system for identification. I have a small label on the base of the magazine. I also always carry the mags in the same place, so if I cannot read the label, I know what’s in it by where I grabbed it from. Even though we have weapons hidden throughout the house, for the time that I am dressed, I am armed. When I go to bed, I keep a Governor revolver within reach. I load the odd chambers with .410 shot shells and the even chambers with 300 grain .45 LC hollow points. We only have 1 door in our home and all our windows are up too high to reach from ground level outside. Any intruders are most likely to come through that series of doors. I made a careful study of the layout of our house before I hid the guns.

  4. I was feeling quite proud of myself several years ago. We had 9 months’ worth of food stashed away, several weeks’ of water, 72-hour kits, long-term bags, GHB’s, ammunition, spare dog food, and several routes mapped out to our bug-out location. And I nearly killed my household because I was too cheap to replace the broken carbon monoxide detector. We discovered the problem in time, but the levels were still so high after many hours with the windows open that the serviceman declared that we should have been dead. All the planning for the future means absolutely nothing if you forget to take care of today.

  5. With just the wife and I at home most days now and us living remotely, I believe any intruder at night to be a lethal threat. I would hope the dogs would have taken care of the matter before anyone got inside but there’s a reason we humans are apex predators. I may just ensure the wife is armed, tuck a .45 in the pants – and then go after the intruder with a katana. There is not doubt it would stab through a sheet rock wall but with my luck I’d cut a power line and light up like in that old Highlander movie.

    My old organization SOP was to notify fire departments whenever possible pre raid due to the real possibility of rounds penetrating interior walls cutting power wires or gas lines and starting fires. This was more of a possibility when using gas rounds.


  6. alternate lighting sources that are safe and wont cause a fire . these are the “glow sticks ” that are available quite cheaply at the dollar store. a six inch stick will provide bright light for a few hours and will get dimmer for a couple more. the containers are heavy plastic so even a dog would have a hard time making a hole. the contents are not harmful so they are safe around children. the best part is they last for years in a drawer until needed. most have a hole to tie a string so they may be suspended from a regular lamp fixture. a double sawbuck will buy enough to provide light for many days. because kids like to use them keep some away from them so they are not activated and useable as needed. the best part many sizes and lasting times are available. I replace mine each year and hand them out to the kids for Halloween. stay safe———-Grampa


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