Household checklist – for a safe and accident-free home

Our checklist for a safe home shows you how you can minimize the danger of accidents in your own four walls. It's a fact that most accidents in Germany happen at home. With the following hints, you can ensure that potential dangers are reduced.

Safety through tidiness

Tidiness makes everything simple and safe. Tidiness means: everything has its place. Buckets, brooms or other objects in corridors, passages and on stairs can easily be tripped over. Sharp, pointed objects such as scissors and knives can cause injuries if carried around loosely in pockets.

Working clothes

Wear suitable clothing when working. Wide sleeves and loose apron strings can get caught on door handles or furniture. Well-fitting shoes with flat heels and sandals with heel-straps give the feet a firm grip. Protect you hands with suitable gloves when handling caustic substances, when gardening and working with water. You can injure yourself on sharp, pointed objects such as scissors and knives if they are carried around loosely in pockets.

Floors, carpeting and stairs

It is easy to slip on loose rugs or doormats. They must therefore be fixed to the floor or secured with a rubber underlay. Floor care products must be suitable for the particular kind of flooring. Unsuitable polishes, e.g. floor wax on stone flooring, make the floor slippery. People can trip over the edges of carpets or stair carpets if they are not laid properly. Objects left in corridors, passageways and on stairs can be tripped over as well.

Ladders and steps

Accidents involving falls frequently occur because people stand on chairs or tables to reach higher places. Every household should therefore have suitable ladders and steps for this purpose. When buying ladders and steps, make sure that they bear the GS safety mark.

Dealing with electric current

Defective electrical appliances, sockets, switches and connecting cables must not be used. Mixers, coffee grinders, juicers, spin driers and other devices with high-speed parts that can cause injuries must not be opened until the moving parts have come to a stop. Adapter plugs and double plugs are dangerous and should not be used. Use multiple plugs or tabletop sockets instead. Always leave new installations or modifications and repairs of electrical systems to professionals. Don't do it yourself!

Dealing with gas

Gas devices should only be used if gas can no longer escape after the flame goes out. Leave servicing and repairs to devices and piping to the professional. If you smell gas, open the windows, close all valves and do not operate any electrical switches. Sparks can trigger an explosion!

Dealing with dangerous substances

Safety information and symbols on original containers indicate the potential danger of the contents. Acids, alkaline solutions, petrol, spirits and other dangerous substances must not be poured into drinking bottles, because mix-ups can result in serious damage to your health.

Fire prevention

Use charcoal igniters to light your grill. With petrol or spirits, an exploding flame can easily set fire to clothing or curtains. Never use water to put out burning oil in a pan (danger of explosion). Try to smother the fire with the lid of the pan or something made of cotton (a towel or tablecloth). When using stain removers or paraffin, it’s best to work outdoors since the vapours are flammable! Be careful with spray cans. They can explode if they become hot.
Don’t hesitate to call the fire brigade if you cannot put a fire out straight away with a fire extinguisher or fire extinguisher spray. Make sure that draughts don’t help the fire to spread.

Motor lawn mowers

Only use motor lawn mowers that have a certification mark. Read and observe the instructions for use. Never work without a grass catcher or baffle plate. Remove stones or other objects from the lawn before mowing. Wear sturdy shoes with non-slip tread when mowing. Never lift the mower up when it’s turned on (wait until the blade stops). Unplug it or remove spark plug connector before cleaning or servicing. When mowing with electric mowers, always keep an eye on the power cable.

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Questions & answers

Security glossary