Prevent unnecessary deaths or serious injury by knowing what you can and can’t do in and around your home. Some tasks require registered contractors to do the work.

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Knowledge is power

  • Electrical, Plumbing, LPgas and Refrigerant gas installers must be registered with the appropriate legislative bodies.
  • Only use products that meet or exceed the minimum requirements of the South African National Standards (SANS).

Safety tips as a prevention is always better than a cure:

  • Install smoke alarms throughout your home building.
  • Have a fire extinguisher available on every level of your home, and specifically near the kitchen.
  • Take gas bottles to your nearest gas retailer to have them checked for leaks on a regular basis. This includes gas bottles used for heaters, braais and stoves.
  • Unplug and switch off all electrical appliances that are not in use.
  • Do not overload one single power source.
  • Ensure that electrical wiring is intact.
  • Keep clutter to a minimum in and around your home.
  • Never leave heaters, electrical blankets or stoves unattended.
  • Check your heating appliances for damage before you “fire them up” this winter.
  • Make sure you have adequate residential buildings insurance in place to cover you in the event of a fire at your home.

What you should do if you get burnt:

DO:

  • Stop the burning process by removing clothing and irrigating the burns.
  • Extinguish flames by allowing the patient to roll on the ground, or by applying a blanket, or by using water or other fire-extinguishing liquids.
  • Use cool running water to reduce the temperature of the burn.
  • In chemical burns, remove or dilute the chemical agent by irrigating with large volumes of water.
  • Wrap the patient in a clean cloth or sheet and transport to the nearest appropriate facility for medical care.

DON’T:

  • Don’t start the first aid process before ensuring your own safety (switch off electrical current, wear gloves for chemicals etc.)
  • Do not apply paste, oil, haldi (turmeric) or raw cotton to the burn.
  • Do not apply ice because it deepens the injury.
  • Avoid prolonged cooling with water because it will lead to hypothermia.
  • Do not open blisters until topical antimicrobials can be applied, such as by a health-care provider.
  • Do not apply any material directly to the wound as it might become infected.
  • Avoid application of topical medication until the patient has been placed under appropriate medical care.

Compiled by Kayla Myburgh for Home Inspirations.