During a disaster, ordinary objects in your home can cause injury or damage. Anything that can move, fall, break, or cause a fire is a home hazard. For example, a hot water heater or a bookshelf can fall; so can books, plants, mirrors, lamps and china.
Conduct a Home Hazard Hunt
Repair defective electrical wiring and leaky gas connections. Fasten shelves securely. Place large, heavy objects on lower shelves. Hang pictures and mirrors away from beds. Put braces on overhead light fixtures. Secure the water heater and gas appliances by strapping them to wall studs. Repair cracks in ceilings or foundations. Store weed killers, pesticides and flammable products away from heat sources. Place oily polishing rags or waste in covered metal cans. Clean and repair chimneys, flue pipes, vent connectors and gas vents.
Inspect your home at least once a year and fix potential hazards. Contact your local fire department to learn about home fire hazards.
Find the safe places in your home for each type of disaster.
Discuss with your family why you need to prepare for disaster and the types of disasters that are most likely to happen. Explain the dangers of fire, severe weather, and earthquakes to children and what to do in each case. Plan to share responsibilities and work together as a team.