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Home Safety Checklist

Most injuries to young children happen in the home. The following checklist will help you find areas in your home that may not be safe. But remember, safety measures cannot make a house completely safe or replace your supervision.

 

Please note: The Home Safety Checklist is intended as a reference tool only. Installing safety products can help reduce unintentional injuries but is not a substitute for adult supervision. Supervision is the most important thing you can do to protect your children. For more information on products, advisories, warning and recalls, please visit Health Canada.1

General Living Areas:

  • Sharp edges on furniture padded
  • Bookshelves and tall furniture fastened to wall
  • Window blind cords secured out of reach
  • Rugs or runners tacked down or slip-free
  • Working smoke alarms on each floor
  • Working carbon monoxide detectors
  • TV and electrical equipment stored securely
  • Safety rails or screens on fireplaces and woodstoves
  • Chimney inspected and cleaned every year
  • Guns stored unloaded in locked cases with ammunition stored separately

Stored locked up and out of sight and reach:

  • Heavy or breakable objects
  • Plants
  • Ashtrays/cigarettes/butts
  • Coins
  • Balloons
  • Wire clothes hangers
  • Purses

Kitchen:

  • Adult always present while child is in kitchen
  • Safety latches on cabinets and drawers
  • High chair has wide base and harness
  • Pot handles turned inward on the stove
  • No tablecloths
  • Food treats and attractive items store away from the stove
  • Working fire extinguisher

Stored locked up and out of sight and reach:

  • Cleaners and chemicals
  • Vitamins and medicine
  • Knives and sharp utensils
  • Matches
  • Plastic bags and plastic wrap
  • Glass and breakables
  • Small Appliances
  • Garbage

Bathroom:

  • Adult is always present while child is in the bathroom or bathtub
  • Water heater turned down to 49°C or 120°F.
  • Always run cold water before hot and always turn cold water off last
  • Bath water temperature always checked with elbow before putting child in
  • Expired medicines returned to pharmacy
  • Slip-free surface in tub and free of bath seats
  • Bathroom doors kept closed to keep children out
  • Locked bathroom doors can be opened from outside

Stored locked up and out of sight and reach:

  • Medicines and vitamins
  • Electrical appliances
  • Sharp objects
  • Garbage
  • Cleaning supplies

Bedroom:

  • Crib, cradle or bassinet meets current safety standards
  • No bumper pads or toys in the crib
  • Mobile out of reach
  • Always keep one hand on child while child is on change table
  • Diaper pail and changing supplies out of reach
  • Window blind cords secured out of reach
  • Locked bedroom doors can be opened from outside
  • Guardrails on all upper bunks (no child under six years on upper bunks)

Indoor Play Areas:

  • Toys put away to avoid dangers on the floor
  • Batteries removed from toys in storage
  • Toys are age appropriate
  • No baby walkers

Toy Cautions:

  • No small pieces that can cause choking
  • No sharp corners or edges
  • No joints that can pinch fingers
  • Painted with non-toxic paint
  • No broken toys
  • Keep toys with small magnets out of the reach of children of any age who still tend to put non-food items in their mouth

Windows:

  • Windows above the first floor secured
  • Chains and cords on blinds and curtains out of reach
  • Furniture away from windows

Electrical Outlets and Fixtures:

  • Switches and outlets have cover plates
  • Electrical cords out of reach but never under rugs or stapled to baseboards
  • Extension cords kept to a minimum
  • All sockets in light fixtures have bulbs in place

Unused outlets covered with safety plugs on:

  • Wall outlets
  • Extension cords
  • Power bars

Stairs and Railings:

  • Hardware-mounted safety gates installed at top and bottom of stairs
  • No loose carpeting, toys or uneven steps
  • Stairs well lit
  • Protective walls and railings on stairs, porches and balconies

Outdoor Areas of the Home:

  • Children in water or near water (pools, streams, puddles, etc.) always within reach
  • Children always within arm’s reach while outdoors
  • Gardening tools and chemicals locked in shed or garage
  • Home play structures inspected regularly and fixed promptly
  • Outdoor play areas kept separate from driveways and street traffic
 
Date of creation: February 4, 2013
Last modified on: February 25, 2015
 

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References

1Middlesex-London Health Unit. (2010) .A Home Safety Checklist [Brochure]. London, Ontario: Middlesex-London Health Unit