When you're at home with your family, it's important to think about safety to avoid accidents and injuries. Fires can happen in the home, which could destroy your house and injure family members. Accidents with poisons, pesticides, and water are also dangerous for people of all ages. Natural disasters such as earthquakes, hurricanes, tornadoes, and floods could also be threats, depending on where you live. Following safety rules helps keep everyone safe.

General Safety

General safety in your home means following safety rules that adults make. Some rules in your home may be not to run in the house, not to climb on furniture, and not to play with matches. It's also important not to play with sharp tools or allow strangers into your house. Rules are meant to keep everyone safe and healthy.

  • Information About Pesticides: Your parents might use pesticides in your house to take care of weeds, insects, and pests such as mice.
  • The Basics of Pesticides: You can be exposed to dangerous pesticides if you inhale them, touch them, or swallow them.
  • About Home Safety: Your family should keep a list of phone numbers that you can use if an emergency happens. Dialing 911 will bring help in many emergencies, but it's also helpful to have numbers of close family or friends as well as the number for your local poison control center.
  • Teaching Your Child to Stay Safe: Following family rules helps keep you safe. For example, you should never answer the phone and give out personal information to a caller.
  • Are Children Safe in Your Home? (PDF): Staying safe at home involves staying away from medicines and vitamins that your parents might store in a cupboard.
  • Safety for Children: Family Rules: Don't open the door unless you know exactly who is knocking, and never allow anyone inside your home unless your parents have given permission.
  • Personal Safety for Children (PDF): Talk to your parents about your concerns for safety. Your parents can help keep you safe by creating safety rules.
  • What Your Child Can Do: Staying with a group when you are walking to school or waiting for the bus is a good way to stay safe.

Fire Prevention

Fire prevention involves several things. You should never play with matches or lighters. Cooking in the kitchen can also be dangerous if you're not careful. If your parents allow you to cook, always follow safety rules about using the stove, oven, toaster, and microwave. If a fire happens, get away from the fire and call for help.

  • Sparky's House: Watch videos and play games to learn about fire safety.
  • Candle Safety (PDF): Candles can be very dangerous in the home. Never leave candles burning unattended, and keep them away from things that could catch fire.
  • Fire Safety Tips (PDF): Creating a fire escape plan with your family helps ensure that everyone knows how to get out of the house if a fire happens.
  • Burn Prevention Worksheet (PDF): Preventing burns is important for staying safe in your home. Accidents can happen in the kitchen with the stove, oven, and even hot water.


Many chemicals around your house are poisonous. Chemicals may be used for cleaning or working in and around the house. To stay healthy, you should not use chemicals without an adult's permission and supervision. Avoid inhaling chemicals, getting them on your skin, and getting them in your mouth.

  • Poison Information: Your house probably has lots of different poisons to avoid, such as medicines and cleaning supplies.
  • The Invisible Killer (PDF): Carbon monoxide is an invisible gas that can cause injury and even death. Appliances in the home might malfunction and put carbon monoxide into the air.
  • Child Tips: You might find poisons in many different places around your home, such as in the garage, in the basement, under the sink, or in the medicine cabinet.
  • Poison Look-Out Checklist (PDF): Stay away from chemicals that your parents might have because these products have poisons that can make you very sick.

Disaster Preparedness

People living in different areas may experience natural disasters. For example, some people live in zones where earthquakes are common. Other people live where hurricanes and flooding can occur, bringing severe water damage to whole cities. People who live in areas where tornadoes are common may experience dangerous storms. Disaster preparedness means that you know what to do if a disaster strikes.

Infant and Toddlers

Infants and toddlers need supervision to keep them safe. Small children also need protection from common dangers in the home such as stairs, cords, and water. Older homes may have lead in the indoor surfaces, which can be dangerous for people of all ages but especially for young children. Parents often need to child-proof a home to keep infants and toddlers safe.

Water Safety

Water safety is important both indoors and outdoors. Indoors, children need constant supervision if they are around water, such as in bathtubs or in buckets. Outdoors, children need supervision if they have access to water in a pool. Children need to be careful to follow house rules about water to stay safe.

Senior Safety

Older adults sometimes have trouble staying safe in their homes. Falling is a common problem as people get older because sometimes they get dizzy or they trip or stumble. Some families install systems that allow older adults to call for help if they fall and get hurt. Adults might also need to call for help if they get sick.

  • Falls and Older Adults: Tripping and falling at home can be a common thing for older people.
  • Crime Prevention and Safety Tips: Older adults should also be careful about opening the door to strangers and letting unknown people into their homes.
  • Fall Prevention: Families might help senior citizens by arranging furniture to make it easier to walk and by making sure rooms are well-lit.

Pet Safety

Having a pet is a fun thing for many families. Dogs and cats are common family pets, but some people might also have a pet bird or hamster. Pets need humans to take care of them. Pets also need to have training so they know how to respond to people. A well-behaved pet should not lash out with biting or scratching.