Home Security And Safety – Don’t Be Complacent
The most serious obstacle to personal safety and home security is an attitude of complacency, or normalcy bias. “It won’t happen to me.” “There aren’t any burglars around here.”
A burglary can happen at anyone’s home. Anywhere. However there are precautions you can take and deterrents put in place by simply taking on more responsibility for your own home security and safety.
Consider the following guidelines while reviewing your home security:
All entrances should have quality ‘bump-resistant‘ locks – preferably deadbolt locks. Check your doors:
– Sliding Glass Door
– Swimming Pool Gate
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Keep doors locked even when you or family members are at home.
Keep windows locked.
Consider window grilles and bars, but be aware of fire safety. Don’t block bedroom windows with permanent grilles if the windows might be used for emergency egress.
Consider keeping a purpose-made portable window rope type ladder to drop out the window of 2nd floor bedrooms for egress (fire or otherwise).
Plan multiple escape routes out of the house in case of fire.
If you have burglar or intrusion alarms, check and use them, even on short errands. Know the codes. Make it habit.
Use a doorstop alarm on any entrance door, and/or a door jammer security bar.
Keep at least one fire extinguisher on each floor, preferably one in each bedroom, and be sure to keep one in the kitchen.
Know how to put out a grease fire.
Periodically check/test smoke detectors and carbon-monoxide detectors, and know that they do have a shelf life – and replace batteries annually.
Keep flashlights in several areas in the house, preferably in each room, and near you bed at night. Check the batteries often, especially if you have children in your home. (They love to play with flashlights!)
A family dog can be a deterrent to criminals. Do not install separate “doggy doors” or entrances. They also can admit small intruders.
Have multiple methods/tools for personal defense and home security. Regularly devote practice time with these ‘tools’ so that you become comfortable and proficient with them.
Know your neighbors. Develop a rapport with them and offer to keep an eye on each other’s homes, especially during trips.
Maintain reasonable skepticism of strangers at the door trying to sell you something. Sometimes these people are casing the joint, so to speak…
Be observant of any unusual activity. Again… be observant. Situational awareness.
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Install outdoor motion detector lights (in the front and rear).
Install real (or fake) security cameras.
While at home, you and your family should rehearse safety drills and be aware of procedures to escape danger and get help.
Vary your daily routines – your coming and goings; avoid predictable patterns.
Know where all family members are at all times.
Set up a safe-room in your home. Designate an internal room. Furnish the safe-haven with an emergency kit. Install a telephone there or be sure to have a method of outside communication in the room.
Teach children never to admit strangers into the home.
Teach them local emergency phone numbers. Make sure younger children know their name, address, and phone number.
Caution teenagers about “blind dates” or meeting anyone they do not know.
Teach the young one’s how to answer the telephone so that they do not give out personal information, such as home address, absence of adults, etc.
Teach them how to say no to strangers.
Teach them how to exit the house in case of emergency.
Add your own home security and safety tips in the comment section below:
There’s a newsletter article circulating the web by David Eifrig that states that a Compressed Air Horn is more effective for driving off intruders than a gun is.
Can I get a rail mounted air horn for my AR?
Blind Squirrel is an idiot. One of those “they’ll take it from you and use it on you” fools. I’m not sure why any other weapon wouldn’t be taken from you. Not that near Furguson MO, there was no run on air horns.
Also, it is NOT “mandatory” for you to answer your door to solicitors. WHY do we subject ourselves to the unwanted solicitations? If you don’t know the people, don’t open the door to them.
I don’t answer my door if it’s someone I don’t know and am not expecting them. And they can see me sitting here through the window in the door, but I have a steel security door that’s locked between them and my door.
Sometimes burglars will knock on the door and ring the bell to see if anyone is home. If no one answers, they break in. Beware.
A great book on why it is ok to be rude is The Gift of Fear. It is an excellent survival read.
We just got new porch lights for the front and back. They are motion activated solar LEDs. I think I’m going to like these a lot better than the old “flip the switch inside to turn on” fixtures we had. The solar is important so that I can still see outside during a power outage.
Police friends tell me often how the cockroaches love to operate in the dark. Recently added a few light fixtures to my home, and replaced ALL the bulbs with a 250 watt LED equivalent. Incredible light. My house is the brightest on the street. No dead zones. Neighbors are ordering the same, so the whole street will light up soon.
LED Light Bulb 50-watt, Daylight / Bright White, 250w to 300w Equivalent Replacement (3700 lumens)
Brightest bulbs I’ve been able find hands down. I’m totally blown away by how bright they are.
Lighting is definitely your first line of security as it is active before the person or persons even get near your house. I do like the airhorn though. I wonder if it can be made to go off if someone should try your door? I’ll have to think on that one.
A few years back my brotherinlaw had seven yappy little dogs that his wife acquired as strays or donations. They lived in the yard and dug a little place under the shed where they would rest. You couldn’t get within 200 feet of the house without having 7 little dogs yapping and running around. It was impossible to trick them or sneak up on them. Perfect first alert.
Well, I work for Golden-Locksmith-Tx, and I also think that if one is at home, keeping a few corners in the house lighted all the time makes a lot of sense. Burglars restrain from entering homes with lights on. In fact even when you’re going out for a few days, and your locking system is a strong one, keep a few lights on, it gives burglars a feeling that someone is still inside.