Home safety checklist

DOWNLOAD PDF

In Australia, injuries are a leading cause of death and disability for children. Many injuries occur in the child’s own home. This home safety checklist is a tool to help parents and carers set up a safer home for children. For more information on preventing specific types of injuries to children, please view our safety factsheet listing.

 

Home environment

Do you have a safety switch to prevent electrocution?

 Yes

 No

Do you have interconnected hard wired smoke alarms located on every level in your home? They should be located outside bedrooms.

 Yes

 No

Do you replace the batteries in your smoke alarm every year? A good way to remember is to change your batteries when you change your clock for daylight savings.

 Yes

No

Are safety plugs fitted in spare power points to prevent children pushing objects into power points?

 Yes

 No

Do you use power boards with built in safety switches/circuit breakers and ensure they are never overloaded?

 Yes

 No

Do you make sure irons are never left unattended and keep them out of reach of children when they are being used and after use? (It can take up to 90 minutes for an iron to cool down to a safe temperature)

 Yes

 No

Have you made sure that your windows, above ground level, do not open more than 12.5cm (either using window guards or stoppers)? This is important for windows where the lowest part of the window is less than 1.7m above the floor. (When choosing locks or guards, make sure that they meet the American Standard for Window Fall Prevention Devices ASTM F2090-08 which calls for a 333 N test load for opening control devices and a 440 N test load for fall prevention screens).

 Yes

 

 No

 

Are safety gates installed at the top and bottom of stairs to prevent children from falling?

 Yes

 No

Are finger-jam protectors used on doors in your home to prevent finger injuries to children?

 Yes

 No

Is alcohol and other poisonous products stored in a child resistant locked cupboard, 1.5m above ground level, out of reach of children?

 

 Yes

 

 No

Are all devices containing button batteries (e.g.; toys, remote controls) kept 1.5m above ground level, out of reach of young children, to prevent severe burns if swallowed? Only use toys and devices where the button battery is secured inside

 

 Yes

 

 No

Are loose and spare batteries (e.g.: button, coin and lithium) kept 1.5m above ground level, out of reach of young children?

 Yes

 No

Have you ensured that there are no baby walkers in your home?

 Yes

 No

Are balustrades on balconies and decks at least 1m in height, non-climbable, with no gaps wider than 12.5cm?

 Yes

 No

Are stair railings at least 1m in height, non-climbable, with no gaps wider than 12.5cm?

 Yes

 No

Do you have a fence that restricts access to your driveway and the street? (Avoid gates and fences with horizontal rails as they are easier for children to climb over).

 Yes

 No

When driving in the car, do children aged less than 7 years, always travel in the back seat in a properly fitted Australian Standards approved child restraint? The Hospital also recommends that children aged 12 years and under ride in the back seat of a vehicle, as it is safer than the front seat.

 Yes

 No

 

Child’s bedroom­­

 

 

Is the space between vertical cot railings between 5cm and 9.5cm wide?

 Yes

 No

Are hot water bottles or electric blankets not in use in a child’s cot or bed?

 Yes

 No

Are all toys suitable for the child's age? Make sure none of these are kept in the cot.

 Yes

 No

Is the furniture (including child’s bed) located safely? (i.e. not near electrical switches, windows, blind cords or ceiling fans)

 Yes

 No

Have you made sure that your windows above ground level do not open more than 12.5cm (either using window guards or stoppers)? This is important for windows where the lowest part of the window is less than 1.7m above the floor.( When choosing locks or guards, make sure that they meet the American Standard for Window Fall Prevention Devices ASTM F2090-08 which calls for a 333 N test load for opening control devices and a 440 N test load for fall prevention screens).

 Yes

 No

Have you made sure that blind cords can’t form a loop 22cm or longer, at a height lower than 1.6m above the ground level?

 Yes

 No

Are all blind and curtain cords fixed to the wall at least 1.6m above ground level, and out of reach of young children?

 Yes

 No

Are nappy sacks stored safely, out of reach of young children to prevent suffocation?

 Yes

 No

Are bunk beds not in use in households with children under 9 years of age?

 Yes

 No

 

Kitchen

 

 

Do you push the kettle and other appliances to the rear of the bench?

 Yes

 No

Do you use a hook to hang up loose cords, wind up excess cords or use cordless equipment so children can’t accidentally pull the equipment on top of themselves?

 Yes

 No

Do you empty unused boiled water from the kettle after use?

 Yes

 No

Do you use the back stovetop burners rather than the front ones and turn pot handles so they are out of reach of young children?

 Yes

 No

Are knives, scissors and other sharp objects stored out of reach of children?

 Yes

 No

Are all cleaning products, chemicals and medications properly labelled and stored in a locked cupboard at least 1.5 metres above the ground?

 Yes

 

 No

 

Do you have a fire blanket or fire extinguisher within reach of your stove?

 Yes

 No

Do you use a barrier, such as a safety gate, to keep young children out of the kitchen when cooking?

 Yes

 No

Do you use a barrier such as a stove guard to stop children reaching pans and hotplates?

 Yes

 No

Do you make sure that upright stoves are stable and fixed properly to the wall?

 Yes

 No

Do you enclose cooking areas, separate them from living areas and keep them off the ground so they are out of reach of young children?

 Yes

 No

Do you keep hot drinks and hot food out of reach of children?

 Yes

 No

Do you use non-slip place mats and coasters instead of table cloths so young children can’t pull hot food and drinks onto themselves?

 Yes

 No

Are matches, cigarette and stove lighters kept out of reach of children?

 Yes

 No

Are plastic bags stored safely, out of reach of young children to prevent suffocation?

 Yes

 No

Do you use an oven-door guard to stop children from touching a hot oven door?

 Yes

 No

Do you stay in the kitchen when cooking and supervise children at all times?

 Yes

 No

 

Laundry

 

 

Are cleaning products, bleaches and detergents stored out of reach, in a child resistant cupboard, 1.5 metres above ground level?

 Yes

 No

Is the nappy bucket used with a lid on and kept out of reach of children? (emptying water when not in use)

 Yes

 No

 

Bathroom

 

 

Has your plumber regulated the hot water delivered from your hot water system to your bathroom to 50ºC, to prevent serious burns?

 Yes

 No

Does the bath have non-slip mats or hand rails?

 Yes

 No

Are medicines and sharp objects kept in a locked cupboard, 1.5 metres above ground level, out of reach of children?

 Yes

 No

Are any electricals (i.e. hair dryers, hair straighteners, electric shavers) stored safely, and away from water and children at all times?

 Yes

 No

Is the bath water temperature always "tested" with your elbow or a bath thermometer before putting a child in the bath?

 Yes

 No

Are hot water taps child resistant and unable to be operated by small children?

 Yes

 No

Are young children supervised at all times by an adult when in the bath?

 Yes

 No

Do you keep the bathroom door closed when the bathroom is not in use?

 Yes

 No

 

Living areas

 

 

Is furniture located safely? (e.g. away from windows, blind cords, ceiling fans and balcony railings)

 Yes

 No

Are sharp edges on tables and furniture covered?

 Yes

 No

Are safety guards placed around all heaters and fireplaces?

 Yes

 No

Are all electric fires unplugged when not in use

 Yes

 No

Are children always supervised when heaters and fireplaces are being used?

 Yes

 No

Do you make sure outdoor heaters are never used indoors or in an enclosed space?

 Yes

 No

Are large objects like bookshelves, TVs, entertainment units or wall units secured to the wall (i.e., so they can't fall down on children, especially when climbed)?

 Yes

 No

Are glass doors made of safety glass or protected by safety film or colourful stickers?

 Yes

 No

Is alcohol and other poisonous products stored in a child resistant cupboard, 1.5 metres above ground level?

 Yes

 No

Are handbags containing poisons such as medicines, batteries and hand sanitisers, kept out of reach of children?

 Yes

 No

Are toys kept away from the main walkway and off stairs?

 Yes

 No

Are rugs and mats secure to prevent a fall?

 Yes

 No

Are all blind and curtain cords fixed to the wall at least 1.6m above ground level, and out of reach of young children?

 Yes

 No

 

Garden shed/ outdoors

 

 

Can your garden shed or garage be locked at all times?

 Yes

 No

Are pesticides, paints, car products and other poisons stored in tightly covered, original containers, 1.5 metres above ground level, out of reach of children?

 Yes

 No

Are snail pellets, insect baits and repellents used in areas where children are unable to gain access to them? (these can look attractive to young children)

 Yes

 No

Are children always supervised around dogs and other pets?

 Yes

 No

Is the outdoor barbeque unable to be turned on by children?

 Yes

 No

Has rubbish, with the potential to conceal poisonous spiders/snakes, been cleared out of the yard?

 Yes

 No

Have poisonous plants been removed from the garden? (see poisonous plants factsheet)

 Yes

 No

Is the outdoor play equipment in good condition and not potentially dangerous??see playground factsheet?

 Yes

 No

Do you have softfall (e.g.; woodchips or mulch) around play equipment that is 50cm or higher off the ground? (sand and grass are not appropriate soft fall material if the equipment is higher than 50cm)

 Yes

 No

Are children familiar with the road rules when riding bicycles, scooters, and roller skates?

 Yes

 No

Do children always wear helmets when riding bicycles, scooters, skateboards etc.?

 Yes

 No

Do you make sure children under the age of 16 are never drivers or passengers on quad bikes?

 Yes

 No

If you allow your children to ride off-road vehicles such as quad bikes and off road motorcycles, do they always wear protective gear and helmets?

 Yes

 No

Are outdoor containers, which have collected water after rain or watering, drained?

 Yes

 No

Are fish ponds or water features covered with strong wire mesh so your child cannot fall in? (children can drown in as little as a few centimetres of water)

 Yes

 No

Does your pool have a fence at least 1.2m high around all four sides of the pool, that cannot be climbed by children and has a self-closing, self-latching gate? This includes inflatable and portable pools that can be filled with more than 30cm of water. See the swimming pool safety factsheet for more information.

 Yes

 No

Do you empty and store away your small portable pool after each use?

 Yes

 No

Are children aged 0-4 years always supervised within arm’s reach, when they are in or around the swimming pool?

 Yes

 No

 

In the case of an emergency

 

 

Do you have a first aid kit in your home?

 Yes

 No

Do you know first aid for burns?

 Yes

 No

Do you know first aid for poisoning?

 Yes

 No

Do you know first aid for choking?

 Yes

 No

Do you know how to provide Cardio Pulmonary Resuscitation (CPR)?

 Yes

 No

Do your children know the 000 emergency phone number?

 Yes

 No

Do you know the location of water, gas and electricity shutoffs?

 Yes

 No

Do your children have a fire escape plan and have you practiced it?

 Yes

 No

Do you have the phone number for the Poisons Information Centre 13 11 26 by the home telephone and saved in your mobile phone?

 Yes

 No

 


 

­­