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Fireman’s Forum: How to Avoid an Embarrassing 911 Call

January 7, 2018

By Kyle Borg, Professional Firefighter/Insurance Agency Principal

Welcome to the first edition of my Fireman’s Forum blog, where my worlds collide. As a full time professional firefighter and a full time insurance agency owner, I have a lot to say about staying safe, protecting yourself, your family, and your assets. Hope you enjoy this unique perspective sprinkled with my dry sense of at times messed up humor. I can’t help it, it’s part of the coping mechanism we develop as firemen from all the things we witness.

January is National Bath Safety Month
As a firefighter in Arizona, I run a number of calls where people are injured getting into or out of the bathtub and shower. The bath can be a dangerous place with the combination of water, slippery soap, and smooth surfaces. No matter what your age, you are at risk of getting injured in the bathroom. National Bath Safety Month reminds us of the dangers and the importance to make the bathroom a safer place for everyone in your family and household. These situations can be highly embarrassing for all parties involved, do yourself a favor and follow these tips to avoid having to call 911 for an avoidable bathroom injury.

Ways to make the Bathroom much Safer:
-Getting in and out of the bath or shower with water on slippery floors is one of the easiest ways to slip or fall in the bathroom. Be sure to have floor mats, non-slip carpets, non-slip mats in the bathtub or shower, and clean up any spills to keep the floors dry.
-Install Grab bars to help you get in and out of a bath or shower, these are a firefighters friend. Do not rely on towel racks, curtain rods or other items that are not made to hold your weight. Grab bars are also recommended by the toilets for the elderly.
-Always test the bath water before getting in or before allowing your children to get in. Setting your hot water heater to a maximum of 120 degrees can prevent water that is too hot or could cause burns. Set to below 115 degrees if you have children or babies.
-Stay with your children while in the bath. Even if they are old enough or know how to swim. Children can be playful in the bath and injuries can occur.
-Make sure the bathroom is well-lit and kept clear of clutter that could cause trips. Always keep night lights on in the bathroom to prevent injuries at night.
-Make sure there are no sharp edges or objects that you could fall on and get hurt.
-Falling is not the only danger in the bathroom. Clean and disinfect the bath and bath toys for the kids to prevent mold or bacteria. And be sure to keep those cleaning supplies out of reach of children.
-Electrical outlets should be checked to make sure they are equipped with CFGI electrical outlets.
-Keep your cell phone in the bathroom within reach in case of emergencies and you need to dial 911.