At a recent event, I met the interior designer who had arranged the large stately room in which the gathering was held. It was a lovely space, but the designer was concerned about the safety of the marble floors and staircase. To reduce danger, she planned to suggest that her client install carpet runners. Her concerns are well-timed. June is National Safety Month. Home-related injuries cost an average of $1,300 per household in 2006, the National Safety Council says. McClatchy-Tribune Newspapers To reduce accidents
Fix loose or damaged carpets on floors and steps. Apply nonskid coating or use slip-resistant mats on slippery floors.
Tidy and declutter. Promptly clean up spills and pick up dropped items. Close drawers and cabinets after each use.
Inspect ladders before and after each use.
Install railings and grab bars in stairways and bathrooms in homes with older residents.
Household hazards also include defective products and contaminated food. You can register online for free recall bulletins from the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, the USDA and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
Warning: Given the volume of recalls, pick your targets carefully. You can also fill out product registration from the manufacturer after you make a purchase. By registering a car seat, crib or stroller, you'll receive recall notices straight from the company. In some cases, the manufacturer will send a retro-fit kit to repair or correct the defective item.