Security tips to keep your kids safe in Florida must be part of your home security consideration. Sure, alarms are an important part of any security system, but those alone come woefully short for children’s safety. Here are some things you can do to improve your security and keep your kids safe.
Security Tips: Keep Things Locked Up
One of the best things you can do to keep your kids safe is keep dangerous items locked up. We are all guilty of having that block of sharp knives on the counter, but could you keep them in a locked cabinet?
The age of your children will determine the extent to which you may want to go to keep things out of their hands. However, over the years, we have seen even young adults come to some very poor decisions that caused harm.
Consider what you might do for a toddler, and then adapt that approach as needed. Keep your dangerous chemicals and medications locked away where they can’t get them.
If you have firearms in your home, keep them locked and unloaded. If possible, keep the ammunition locked separately with a different key or combination. Furthermore, consider trigger locks as an extra deterrent.
Keep any alcohol you have put away, and locked to prevent tampering. Don’t forget about the chemicals you keep in your garage or shed. While this may seem like a lot, kids too easily get into things they shouldn’t, even if accidentally.
Leverage Smart Technology
The advent of smart technology has more implications than simply making things more convenient. Rather, with strategic implementation of smart devices around your home, you can help keep your kids safe.
Consider, for instance, the use of a smart door lock and video doorbell. These allow you to easily control access to your home from your mobile app. When someone comes to the door, you can easily see who it is, and open the door if it’s appropriate. This is especially helpful when leaving older kids home alone.
There is also the use of video surveillance and motion detectors in your home. If you have a room that is off limits or contains dangerous items, you can easily be alerted to someone entering the room.
Not everyone needs the same smart home security setup. Work with an experienced provider like Security Ox to understand your specific needs.
Check In When You’re Away
Some may say this is acting like a helicopter parent. But, is there really such a thing when it comes to our kids’ safety? While you are out, check in on your kids to see how they are doing.
Nothing takes the place of making a phone call and hearing your children’s voices. However, the right smart devices will allow you to have nearly the same experience without them needing to have a phone.
You can also use remote access cameras to check in on your kids while you’re away. This can help a lot when it comes to leaving young children with a new sitter.
Just be sure to inform your sitter or nanny of cameras on the premises, especially you are recording audio. In the state of Florida, you are required to get consent for audio recording, otherwise such a recording is inadmissible in court if something were to happen. Just be sure to check with your personal attorney for more on the possible legal ramifications.
Set Some Rules
More than anything else, ground rules are a great way to ensure your kids stay safe. When they know what you expect, they are more likely to meet that expectation. Here are some common areas you’ll want to consider setting some boundaries.
- Security Tips: Answering the Door or Phone
Be sure your kids understand when it’s okay to answer the door and house phone, if you still have one. If you have a doorbell camera, teach them how to check it so that they can see who’s at the door. Talk with them about not answering the door when you’re not home, even if they think they know the person.
- Security Tips: Operating Locks
It’s important to talk about and train on how to operate some locks. Here’s the catch, they need to be able to operate the locks that will help keep them safe, while not those protecting them.
For instance, it’s important they know how and when to operate window and door locks. However, you may not want to tell them how to get into your firearms safe. As you train on how to operate the right locks, be sure to discuss the times when it would be appropriate to do so.
- Security Tips: Friends and Other Visitors
If your kids are old enough to stay home alone, be sure to discuss rules about visitors, including their own and family friends. It’s important for your kids to know who should be on your property and when.
It’s an older idea, but create a safe word for anyone who has your permission to be there. Just like a good password, you should change the code word occasionally. If you need to send someone to them, you’ll give that person the code word so that your kids know they are authorized. This of course is in case cell phone communication has been interrupted.
- Security Tips: Cooking
Be sure to discuss any rules around cooking, especially whether your kids are allowed to use your range or oven. Many home fires start in the kitchen because of either being left unattended or someone not knowing how to use the equipment.
Consider whether you have an electric or gas stove, and the nuances associated with each. Also, consider how much experience your children have using these appliances, and whether they can do so safely without direct supervision.
Plan Ahead To Keep Things Safe
Take some time to plan ahead with your family. If you need help getting a jump start, you can check out ready.gov.
As you plan, consider hosting occasional drills to be sure no one panics if an emergency happens. Practice multiple different types of emergencies, from a home invasion, a fire alarm, to a severe storm. No matter what kind of emergency you’ll practice, think through what should happen, and practice it together so that there are fewer surprises.