Unexpected hazards in your house

Happy homeowners frequently fill their houses with pets and children. Part of the joy of having a larger space is that that you have autonomy. Anyone you love is welcome to move in! Today’s entry is dark. Bad things happen to pets and children in houses. In hopes that they never happen to you and yours, I mention these:

Garage-RefrigeratorRefrigerators and Furniture

Most municipalities demand that refrigerators that are left on the curb for pick-up must have their doors removed. Why? Children play hide and seek in abandoned refrigerators, get trapped in them, and can die. As a homeowner, you may have an extra refrigerator or a freezer in the basement or garage. Can a child get inside? Chances are they won’t be able to get out.

unexpected home hazardsTragically, this happens. It happened to two children in a hope chest (A hope chest is typically a cedar-lined trunk made of wood.) They hid in a hope chest that could not be opened from the inside; by the time they were found, it was too late to save them. Many antique hope chests have sturdy clamps that lock the heavy wooden lid in place. They were designed to be moth-proof, so have little or no air circulation.

Car Trunks

Car trunks are an attractive nuisance for children playing hide and seek. They are most deadly in the summer, when the trunk gets hot and stuffy faster.  Kidsandcars.org  recommends

  • Teach kids not to play in or around cars.
  • Always lock car doors and trunks, and keep the keys out of children’s sight and reach.
  • Supervise young children closely when they are around cars. Be especially careful when loading or unloading the trunk.
  • Keep rear fold-down seats closed to help prevent kids from getting into the trunk from inside the car.

Although this may seem like common sense, I don’t think it is all obvious. Children (and pets) often crawl into closets, cabinets, and other tight spaces. Sometimes they can get out. Sometimes they can alert you to their presence. Sometimes, they fall asleep and die. Please walk through your house, yard, and garage to find these hazards before some little creature, human or not, does.

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