Accidents happen, and they cannot be avoided totally all the time, even with extreme and vigilant carefulness. In the home where people feel secure and safe, accidents still cause much grief and anxiety. In fact, fatal home accidents in the United States is considered second only to vehicular accidents as top causes of death (although some sources indicate it is number one). There is a positive aspect, however, and it is that most home accidents are preventable through precautions if we understand what can cause them.
The leading fatal home accidents are falls, poisoning including those from gas leaks, fires, choking, drowning, firearm discharge, and accidental cutting, though the last two are rather minor in terms of incidence. The accepted major causes of these accidents are hazards, carelessness, lack of preventive measures and ignorance.
Hazards. Falls as accidents are divided into two categories: objects falling on the person, and the individual falling down. When objects are stacked overhead, weak shelf supports and overloaded shelves are major causes of accidents, particularly when such stacks are in or near human traffic routes. The shelves are hazardous to humans using the path.
And of course, you are familiar with stories of toys and items left in someone’s way, who accidentally trips on them and fall down. Others stories may involve handles of pots or pans on the stove left hanging out where they can be bumped or knocked by passing individuals, causing accidents.
Carelessness. As in the example of the pots above, carelessness is a leading cause of home accidents, fatal or otherwise. Many people simply take many things for granted, not caring whether they can hurt others or not. Having uncovered electrical outlets is an example of carelessness, since small children can be curious and insert metal objects into the slots and get electrocuted.
Another example is leaving poisonous substances, batteries, matches, or plastic bags within reach of children. Such items should be kept within locked cabinets or containers to be opened only by adults.
Lack of preventive measures. In homes with swimming pools and small children, for instance, the pools must be fenced so that the children cannot get into them while playing. Most drowning accidents of children involve unfenced or uncovered pools, many with only shallow water of a few inches.
Although many stairs in homes with children have gates, a lot of those gates are made so that children can still climb over them, or situated too near the staircase that the child –or an adult– falls right into it once he is over the gate.
Ignorance. Many people simply do not know how to prevent or avoid accidents in the home. Putting non-slip mats in the bathroom, placing tippable chairs far from breakable windows, keeping passageways uncluttered, and not buying small items that can choke children are some of the safety measures to counter possible causes of home accidents. Yet not very many homeowners know of these and similar precautions, coming to think of them only after accidents have occurred.
In preventing home accidents, a little thought about possible accidents can greatly help everyone.
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This article was written by Michelle from Bush & Co. – who provide case management dervices to people who have suffered complex injuries. In her spare time Michelle enjoys reading books and catching up on all the blog feeds she has subscribed to.