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Prevent garage hazards from harming your family

Posted by Scott Stueber on Apr 25, 2017 10:00:00 AM

garage.jpgWith nicer weather on the way, we'll start seeing a flurry of activity in our neighborhoods. Neighbors will begin walking/running, grilling out, and starting yard cleanup to deal with what Mother Nature left behind.

Neighborhood kids will begin knocking on your door to see if your kids can play. Scooters, bikes, and trampolines will be back in use.

With this flurry of activity, ensuring your property is safe for your children and their friends is essential. We often hear news reports about children being injured or killed while playing outside.

Here are some safety tips to keep your children, their friends, and your neighborhood safe.

Overhead garage door

Every day we drive in and out of the garage. With the simple push of a button, we can open and close our overhead garage door without much effort.

Have you ever taken the time to make sure your garage door is operating safely? Today, overhead garage doors have photo eyes (safety sensors) mounted approximately six inches off the floor. If an object blocks the view of the photo eyes, the door shouldn't close.

However, bumping into the sensors with your lawnmower or bicycle can knock them out of alignment and result in them not operating correctly. Check out three quick safety tips from LiftMaster to ensure your garage door safety features work correctly.

Garage utility/service door

Wind can whip through your garage aggressively depending on weather patterns and the direction your garage faces. If you leave your service door open, it's essential to make sure the wind can't slam it shut. When my brother was a young boy, he almost lost a finger because the wind caught the door. Consider installing a doorstop on your service door. You can go in and out when working on yard projects, and your kids will remain safe.

Backing out of the driveway

So often, we hear tragic stories about people backing out of their driveways and injuring or killing a small child. If you have small children, or they live in your neighborhood, be extra cautious.

If you can avoid backing out of your driveway whenever possible, that's the safest route. If not, walk around your car and look for children playing in your driveway or riding on the sidewalk on their bicycles. If the area looks clear, slowly back out and listen. I recommend keeping the radio off. Laughing or screaming children can indicate they're entering your area. Continuously turn your head and look in the mirrors. If you have a backup camera, don't rely on this 100% of the time. They do have some limitations.

Uneven concrete

Winter weather can be brutal on sidewalks, driveways, and roadways, causing significant cracking and shifting of concrete. If you notice large cracks or uneven concrete on your property, consider having it repaired immediately. This can help avoid trip and falls, which could lead to significant injuries.


If your garage cabinet is like mine, you probably store chemicals and yard tools that can harm small children. Here are a couple of recommendations to keep them safe.

  1. Buy a cabinet that locks.
  2. Don't store your kid’s toys on lower shelves. Buy/use a different cabinet for their toys.
  3. Store dangerous chemicals or sharp pruning tools on high shelves out of the reach of children.
  4. Talk to your children about safety and explain to them why they need to stay away from the cabinet.

Do you have any tips or information you’d like to share? I’d love to hear them; please share them in the box below.

Topics: Home Safety

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