When you have a child with autism who’s a wanderer, home safety tends to focus on keeping your child safely inside rather than keeping other people out. It’s like Fort Knox, but backwards – everything, from the locks and alarms on the doors to the window guards on the windows, is designed to keep your child from leaving the house unsupervised.
But that doesn’t mean you should ignore other aspects of home safety, or let your emergency preparedness disappear off your radar. MBIntel is a great way to gauge where you’re at in terms of security, safety, and emergency preparedness. You answer a series of questions and at the end they provide a customized safety analysis for your home! You can get a basic risk analysis for free, or upgrade to the paid version for extras like a tailored assessment report, a comprehensive listing of your vulnerabilities, and tailored strategies and recommendations. (Keep reading for a $10 off coupon code on the paid version!)
I found that just answering the questionnaire made me aware of where we’re slacking on safety, security, and emergency preparedness. The questions are very detailed and thorough, and every time I had to say “No, I don’t have that safety feature or plan in my home,” it made me realize that we’re so busy focusing on keeping my 9-year-old son with autism safe that we’ve neglected some aspects of keeping our home as a whole safe.
Some of the safety measures we take for our son go both ways – the deadbolts and alarms on all doors leading to the outside were put in place to help prevent elopement, but they’re also a deterrent to would-be burglars. Likewise, the window guards and locks, put in place to prevent my kiddo from throwing his toys (or himself) out the windows would also make breaking into our home via windows a much more difficult task. And after the “Hey, even though mom hid all the stove knobs, that pilot light is always on and I can totally make paper catch on fire using that!” incident of 2013, we also have fire extinguishers stashed in strategic locations throughout our home – and also replaced the gas stove with an electric one.
In other areas, though, the MBIntel report showed that we’re woefully under-prepared. Some of the issues can’t really be helped – for example, we have a fire safety plan and my teenagers understand it and can follow it, but I know that if we ever experience a house fire, my 9-year-old (and my toddler, of course) will both need direct assistance to safely escape the house and get to our safe place. Other things, though – like not knowing where the main shut-offs for the gas and water lines are in the event of an emergency – can easily be remedied.
And still other tasks, many related to emergency preparedness, are things that we SHOULD have already done and can take care of in the near future – things like keeping first aid kits strategically placed around our home (we have one presently, and it’s in my office), and having an emergency supply of food and drinking water available. We don’t get earthquakes here in northern Michigan, and our home is located at the top of a pretty big hill so we’re at low risk for flooding from natural events, but we do live in an area that gets tornadoes and blizzards that can knock the power out, not to mention the risk of flooding if a water main breaks or our pipes freeze in the winter, so the recommendations provided in the detailed report I received from MBIntel (downloadable as a PDF) are something I plan to act on in the very near future.
Make sure you head on over to MBIntel.net to get your FREE home risk analysis! Since it’s completely free to fill out the questionnaire and get your complete home risk assessment, there’s no reason at all not to do it – just answering the questions can make you more aware of the gaps in your safety and security planning. And if you want to upgrade to the more detailed report, specifically tailored for your home and family, you can save $10 off the $29.95 price by using coupon code MomBuzz!
This post was created in partnership with Mom Buzz Media.
All opinions expressed are my own and are not influenced in any way.
Thank you for reading!