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Safety tips from Alert Security and
ADT Home Security Systems

Alert Security – Locally owned and operated since 1997

Home Safety
Neighborhood Watch
Keeping Children Safe
Safety Tips for Seniors
Fire Prevention
Carbon Monoxide Poisoning
Teen Dating Safety
Business Travel Safety
Back to School Safety
Protecting Children Online
Pet Safety During a Disaster
 

Home Safety

About Home Safety

  • According to the FBI, a burglary occurs every 15 seconds.(1)
  • A home without a security or alarm system is 2 to 3 times more likely to be burglarized.(2)
  • More than 60% of residential burglaries took place during the day between 6 a.m. and 6 p.m.(1)
  • More than 1.4 million home invasions occurred in 2005.(1)
  • 90% of police believe monitored home alarm systems deter break-in attempts.(3)
  • Nine out of ten convicted burglars agree they'd avoid a house protected by a home alarm system. (4)
  1. Federal Bureau of Investigation, 2006 National Crime Report.
  2. Simon Hakim, Temple University.
  3. International Association of Chiefs of Police
  4. ADT Security Systems, Inc.

Home Safety Tips:

  • Listen to your intuition and tell your children to trust their instincts. If something “feels wrong”, there’s a good chance that something IS wrong.
  • If you suspect someone is following you (either on foot or by car), don’t go home. Go to a trusted neighbor or a public place, such as a gas station or convenience store) to call police.
  • Have working lights at all entrances to your home.
  • Use deadbolt locks on doors and windows.
  • Trim back shrubs away from windows and doors, so intruders have nowhere to hide.
  • Use bushes and shrubs with thorns under windows.
  • Use timers to turn lights and radios on when you are not home. Noise keeps intruders away.
  • Stop mail and newspaper delivery when you are out of town.
  • Do not use your first name on your mailbox or in the phone directory. Use your first initial instead.
  • Check who is at the door before opening it, and do not open the door to an unexpected visitor.
  • If someone you don’t know asks to use your phone, do not let him or her into your home. Offer to make the call for them.
  • Don’t hide extra keys in accessible places. Criminals will find them.
  • Know which of your neighbors you can trust in an emergency.
  • Never give personal information to telephone solicitors.
  • Make sure exterior doors are solid wood, fiberglass or steel, not hollow core.
  • Make sure exterior door hinges are on the inside, so that a criminal cannot remove the pins and pull the door out of the frame.
  • Secure sliding glass doors with a bolt lock.
  • Most home burglaries occur during the day, so be in the habit of locking doors and windows whenever you leave home.
  • Close your garage door, and do not leave valuables or keys in your vehicle.
  • Install motion-detecting floodlights outside your home. Be sure to mount them high enough so they cannot be easily disabled.
  • If there is a Neighborhood Watch Program in your community, join it. If not, start one.
  • Get to know your neighbors.
  • Report any suspicious persons or vehicles to your local police.
  • Burglars may scan newspapers for wedding and funeral announcements or other events that may take you away from home. Ask a trusted friend to stay at your home during these occasions.
  • Make an inventory of valuables in your household and store it somewhere other than your home, such as in a safe deposit box.
  • Ask for I.D. from service representatives who come to your home, and if they don't have it, check with their company to verify identity before letting them in.
  • When vacationing, leave a car in your driveway, or arrange for a neighbor to keep a car there and move it around from time to time.
  • Have someone mow your lawn, rake leaves, and shovel snow while you are away.

ADT has more than 100 years of experience protecting homes and rental properties like yours. Call us today at 303.220.9750 and feel safer tomorrow.

Neighborhood Watch

Neighborhood Watch programs go by many names: Community Watch, Crime Watch, and Building Watch. But whatever you call it, when neighbors organize to help the police watch over their community, it can make a significant impact on reducing crime -- and fear -- in your area.

What A Neighborhood Watch Does

The typical Watch program involves four ways to make your neighborhood safer:

  1. Offers a service to mark valuable items with an identifying number to discourage theft and help the police track down stolen articles.
  2. Utilizes proven techniques to make homes safer.
  3. Organizes residents in watching over each other and the neighborhood, noting and reporting anything unusual or suspicious to the local authorities, including:
    • Screams or calls for help
    • Someone looking into cars or homes
    • A stranger removing items from unoccupied homes or closed businesses
    • Vehicles cruising slowly or without lights
    • Anyone being forced into a vehicle
    • A stranger stopping to talk to a child
  4. Calling 911 or other local emergency number to:
    • Quickly explain what happened.
    • Give your name and address.
    • Describe the suspect's gender and race, age, height, weight, hair color, clothes, and distinguishing features like facial hair, scars, tattoos, or accent.
    • If a vehicle is involved, report the color, make, model, year, license plate and distinguishing features, like bumper stickers or dents.

First Steps

An individual, community organization, or law enforcement agency can initiate a Neighborhood Watch program through a few simple steps:

* Hold a meeting to talk about crime problems and see if there is enough interest to organize a Watch.
* Arrange for local law enforcement professionals to train neighbors in home security, crime patterns, what to watch for, and how to report it.
* Select an overall coordinator and block captains to organize volunteers and establish effective communications.
* Sign up volunteers, including homeowners and renters, business owners, the elderly, working parents, young people ... anybody who can help.

Effective Neighborhood Watch Program Materials and Essentials

A typical Neighborhood Watch program requires:

* Regular meetings to keep your community organized.
* Volunteers patrolling the neighborhood, on foot or in cars, to spot and report any problems.
* Regular communications, such as fliers, newsletters, or paper or electronic bulletin board messages.
* Special events to keep members interested and active, including helpful seminars, block parties, neighborhood clean-ups, and tournaments.
* Special safety programs to meet your community's unique needs, like a block parent program to help children during emergencies.

Keeping Children Safe

Tips for Keeping Children Safe:

  • Make sure your children know their full name, address, and phone number.
  • Use a play phone to teach young children how and when to call 911.
  • Teach your children to never accept gifts or rides from people they don’t know well.
  • Show children how to lock doors and windows.
  • Help children understand their “gut instinct”.
  • If children are old enough to stay home by themselves, always leave a phone number where you can be reached, as well as numbers for neighbors and emergency services.
  • Practice your home fire escape plan.
  • Have your children call and check in with you when they arrive home.
  • Set rules about having friends over when you're not there and for your children going to friends' houses when no adults are present.
  • Teach children not to reveal to callers that no adult is home. Instead, they should say, "She can't come to the phone right now."

ADT monitoring service provides 24-hour protection for those you love. Children can use the ADT keypad to call for help if they feel threatened.

Safety at Home:

A fatal injury occurs in a home every 14 minutes. A disabling injury occurs every 4 seconds.(5)

The five leading causes of fatal injury are:

  • Falls
  • Poisoning
  • Choking
  • Drowning
  • Smoke and fire.(5)

An ADT Medical Alert System ensures that you or your loved ones can get help in an emergency.

5. National Safety Council

Safety Tips for Seniors

  • Install and use good locks on doors and windows.
  • Don’t hide a spare key under the doormat, in the mailbox, or in a planter. A better idea is to leave it with a trusted neighbor.
  • When service or delivery people come to the door, ask for ID. Check with their company if you are still uncomfortable.
  • Make sure the street number on your house is large and well-lighted so emergency personnel can find your home quickly.
  • Join a Neighborhood Watch program to help protect your community.
  • If you are unsure about a sales pitch or offer, contact the police, Better Business Bureau, the local consumer protection office, or the National Consumers League Fraud Information Center at 800-876-7060.
  • Check for a Triad program in your community. It partners seniors with law enforcement agencies to prevent crime against the elderly and to give support to law enforcement personnel. It is sponsored by the American Association of Retired Persons (AARP), the International Association of Chiefs of Police and the National Sheriffs Association (NSA). Get details from your AARP chapter, local police or by calling NSA at 703-836-7827.

With an ADT security system for Homeowners and Renters, individuals can quickly and easily call for help on the home alarm keypad. You may also want to consider a medical monitoring system for the elderly people in your life.

Personal Safety at Home:

  • A fatal injury occurs in a home every 14 minutes. A disabling injury occurs every 4 seconds. (5)
  • The five leading causes of fatal injury are:
    • Falls
    • Poisoning
    • Choking
    • Drowning
    • Smoke and fire.(5)

An ADT Medical Alert System ensures that you or your loved one can get help in an emergency.

5. National Safety Council

Fire Prevention

About Fire Safety:

  • The National Fire Protection Agency reports that 80% of all civilian fire deaths occurred in a home fire.(4)
  • 65% of reported home fire deaths occurred in home without fire alarms or working smoke detectors.(4)

4. National Fire Protection Association

Fire Prevention Tips

  • Establish a fire escape plan for your home and practice it with your children.
  • Have a meeting place outside (for example, the mailbox) in case you have to evacuate.
  • When buying, building or renovating your home, make sure all roofing materials are fire resistant.
  • Clean your gutters regularly. Dry leaves and evergreen needles in rain gutters can easily catch fire.
  • Trim back any tree limbs that are within 10 feet of your chimney and dead limbs overhanging your home to prevent them from catching fire.
  • To prevent sparks or embers from wildfires from entering and igniting your home, place screens with openings of 1/2” or smaller over all attic and foundation vents.
  • To prevent sparks from escaping and igniting vegetation near your house, cap your chimney with a 1/2”mesh cover.
  • Store firewood and other combustibles away from your home, and keep the lid on your trash can.
  • Post your address prominently so firefighters can find your house in case of emergency.
  • Maintain your landscape to eliminate dead vegetation that could catch fire and use fire-resistant plants.

An ADT security system for Homeowners and Renters monitors for fire and smoke and immediately provides an alarm then notifies fire personnel. You are protected all day, every day – whether you are home or not.

Carbon Monoxide Poisoning

About CO Poisoning:

  • Carbon monoxide (CO) is one of the leading causes of poisoning deaths in the U.S.(6)
  • Carbon monoxide is colorless, odorless, and tasteless.(5)
  • More than 15,000 injuries and 2,100 deaths occur from CO every year.(6)
  • Homes with gas appliances, gas logs, or an attached garage may contain carbon monoxide.
  • Symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning are fatigue, nausea, headache, and dizziness. These can often be confused as flu symptoms.
  • The very young, very old, pregnant women, unborn babies, and people with heart and respiratory problems are most vulnerable.

6. National Safety Council
7. Journal of the American Medical Association.

Prevention Tips:

  • Be sure fuel-burning appliances are vented directly to the outside.
  • Keep fresh air circulating in your home.
  • Have your heating system checked for carbon monoxide emissions before the heating season begins.
  • Consider installing a carbon monoxide detector.
  • Periodically check your kitchen range, fireplaces, and water heater for carbon monoxide emissions.
  • If you have a wood-burning fireplace, have the chimney cleaned and inspected every year. When you have a fire in the fireplace, crack a window or door slightly to allow proper airflow, and keep the damper open until the fire is completely out.
  • Never run your car engine for more than a few moments in a garage or other enclosed area, even if the door is open.

Your ADT home security system can monitor and provide alarms for dangerous levels of CO in your home. Our technology can detect the poison before you would even notice it.

Teen Dating Safety

Your teen may not realize he or she is in a potentially dangerous relationship. Recognizing the warning signs can help your teenager stay safe.

No matter how old you are, it’s best to tell someone where you are going, who you are with, and when you expect to return.

Be cautious if someone you are dating displays any of these behaviors:

  • Acts jealous and possessive.
  • Won't let you have friends.
  • Checks up on you.
  • Refuses to accept breaking up.
  • Bosses you around.
  • Insists on making all decisions.
  • Belittles you and your opinions.
  • Frightens or threatens you.
  • Owns, uses or talks a lot about weapons.
  • Acts violent, getting into fights or angering quickly.
  • Pushes, grabs, pinches or hits you.
  • Pressures you for sex or gets serious about your relationship too fast.
  • Uses alcohol or other drugs and pressures you to do the same.
  • Has been involved in a number of failed relationships.

If you think you may be in a relationship that could become threatening, you can:

  • Talk to someone you trust and/or can help, like a parent, friend, counselor or clergyman.
  • Tell a school counselor or security officer what's going on.
  • Make daily notes about the disturbing behavior.
  • Avoid being alone with your date at home, school, work or anywhere else.
  • When you go out, tell someone where you are going, who they are with and when you'll be back.
  • Plan and rehearse what you will do if your dating partner gets abusive.

If someone you know is a victim of dating violence, here are some ways you can help:

  • If you see signs of abuse, talk to your friend about it. Don’t look the other way.
  • Tell your friend that you're worried and want to help.
  • An abusive partner often undermines the victim's self-confidence, so point out your friend's good qualities.
  • Encourage your friend to talk to a trusted adult, offering to go along.
  • If the situation's getting worse, talk to an adult yourself, and if you witness an assault, contact the police, school principal or other adult immediately.
  • Don't endanger yourself by confronting the abusive partner.

Business Travel Safety

Traveling can make you especially vulnerable. The following tips offer suggestions to keep you safe:

Air Travel

  • Keep your eye on your bags—especially a laptop computer or other valuable gear — at all times. Don't let anyone but uniformed airline personnel handle or watch them.
  • Be wary of mishaps, like someone bumping you or spilling a drink. It could be a diversion for a robbery attempt.
  • Keep your pocketbook close to your body or carry your wallet in an inside front pocket. The safest option is to keep most of your cash and credit cards in a concealed money pouch.
  • Record the contents of checked luggage and carry valuables onto the plane with you.
  • Don't draw attention to jewelry, cameras or other expensive items.

Road Safety

  • Study your route on a map before you start or use a reliable GPS system.
  • If using a rental car, make sure it is in good operating condition and learn how to operate all controls before starting out.
  • Keep maps and rental agreements concealed, and store luggage out of sight in the trunk.
  • Keep car doors locked and park in lighted areas near entrances.
  • Have keys ready, so you can enter the car quickly. Be sure to check the back seat and floors before you get in.
  • If bumped by another car, rather than getting out you might want to signal the other driver to follow you to a police station or other safe location.

Hotel Safety

  • Don't leave your luggage unattended.
  • Make sure your room has a peephole and deadbolt lock on the door and window locks, and use them.
  • If hotel personnel state your room number where others can hear, ask for a different room and a written note with the number.
  • In case of emergency, know where exits, elevators and public phones are located.
  • Leave valuables at home, or keep them in the hotel safe.
  • If going out, ask hotel staff about neighborhood safety and areas to avoid.
  • If someone claiming to be a hotel employee shows up at your door unexpectedly, don't let him or her in without first calling the front desk for confirmation.
  • Don't display your room key or leave it where it may get stolen.

Back to School Safety

Students on their way to and from school are at risk of injury from traffic accidents. Follow the tips below to help keep your child safe:

Walking to School

  • Spend time walking with your children and observe how they deal with traffic.
  • Choose the route to school or the bus stop that is the safest for your child. Take the same route every day and avoid short cuts.
  • Remind your children to demonstrate proper pedestrian behavior. It is extremely important for them to look left-right-left before crossing a street.
  • Always walk facing traffic if no sidewalk is available.
  • Pick the place where your child will cross the street. Never enter the street from between parked cars or from behind brushes or shrubs. Cross streets at corners, and use traffic signals and crosswalks whenever possible.
  • Provide your children with bright clothing, so motorists can easily see them.

Riding on a Bus to School

If possible, an adult should be close to the bus stop at all times, and children should know the rules of the road:

  • Stay out of the street while waiting for the bus.
  • Wait for the bus to come to a complete stop before approaching.
  • Walk immediately onto the sidewalk and out of traffic after getting off the bus.
  • Never cross the street behind a school bus.

Riding a Bicycle to School

  • ALWAYS wear a bike helmet.
  • Ride with traffic.
  • Wear bright clothes or reflective safety gear, especially on dark mornings and in cloudy, rainy, or foggy weather.

Riding in a Passenger Vehicle to School

  • Children less than 5 years old and less than 40 pounds should be properly buckled into a weight-appropriate child safety seat in the back seat. For children age 5 and older, make sure they are buckled in all seating positions at all times.
  • In addition, safety experts say that all children under the age of 12 should ride in the back seat, and that children weighing from 40 to 80 pounds (usually 4 to 8 years of age) should ride in a booster seat.

Protecting Children Online

Today’s children are growing up with the Internet. Shielding them from it entirely is no longer an option. Here are some things parents can do to keep the online experience a safe one:

Controlling Access

  • Place the computer in a public place in your home so you can casually monitor online activity.
  • Choose an online service that enables you to block access to any site not marked as appropriate for children.
  • Buy software that lets you design your own set of protective barriers to block sites and prevent your child from giving out information online.
  • Explore the Internet with your children, teaching them how to search for and find information. Discuss what types of sites to avoid.

Teach Your Child to:

  • Let you know right away if he or she sees anything disturbing online.
  • Never give out any personal information.
  • Never agree to meet someone face-to-face after encountering him or her online.
  • Never respond to messages that contain obscene or weird language.
  • Avoid sites that charge for services.
  • Never send personal or family photos to anyone online without getting permission from you.
  • Be careful not to discuss or post specific information about their school, activities or town.

Away From Home

  • If your child has a friend with Internet access, find out from that child's parents if adequate controls are in place and if children are monitored when online.
  • Make sure Internet access at school is controlled and monitored by adults.
  • Make sure your child's school has an Acceptable Use Policy (AUP) that defines acceptable and unacceptable online activities and resources, spells out the consequences for violations, and has a place for you and your child to sign.

If you encounter something disturbing:

  • If your child receives offensive or threatening e-mail, save the material as evidence and contact your local law enforcement agency immediately.
  • If you encounter a site that's inappropriate for children, send its address to online services and sites that provide blocking software so they can review it.

Pet Safety During a Disaster

If pets are part of your family, you need to keep the following things in mind in case of emergency.

  • Make sure your pet has a collar with tags clearly identifying your name and phone number.
  • Red Cross and other shelters are not allowed to accept pets, so check in advance for hotels or motels that accept pets, or make arrangements with friends, relatives, vets, boarding facilities or animal shelters.
  • If you are at risk of an emergency, such as a hurricane, assemble a pet disaster kit in an easy-to-carry bag. Include medications, medical records and first aid kit, leashes or carriers to keep pets under control, current photos (in case they get lost), food, drinking water, bowls, cat litter and pan, can opener, a favorite toy or two, and care information, plus your vet's phone number in case you board your pets somewhere.
  • At first sign of trouble, get your pets inside, so you can pack them up quickly, confirm pet care arrangements, check to make sure animal ID is secure and up-to-date, and check your disaster kit.
  • If you must evacuate, your pets may panic and behave oddly, so keep them secure at all times and handle them carefully.
  • For birds and reptiles, you'll want a secure travel cage, a blanket wrap for warmth or a mister for cooling, and sliced fresh fruit or vegetables with high water content.

 

 

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