This is a guest blog post by Mario Cattabiani about some common hazards that are found around your home, and what you can do to avoid them.
As summer months come and outdoor barbecues with friends become common, you need to take a good look around your yard to ensure that it is a safe place to invite people to. Yards are one of the most dangerous places in the home, with safety hazards around every corner. While you cannot eliminate all of these, and your homeowner’s insurance policy provides protection when injuries occur, there are things you can do to make your yard a safer place for summer entertaining.Block Off the Pool
If you have a pool, even if it is not an in ground pool, make sure it is adequately fenced off. You do not want a curious child falling in, as it takes only a few unattended moments for a child to drown. This type of tragedy can often be completely avoided if you simply take the time to add a fence.
Sadly, children’s swimming pools are a hazard too, and often homeowners forget to use caution with these because they hold so little water. A child can drown in just a few inches of water, so drain these pools when they are not in use. Always supervise kids when they are playing in the pool, even if it is just a small kiddie pool.
Restrain the Dog
If you have a dog, even a friendly one, make sure it is restrained when you are entertaining. Dogs can unexpectedly bite, and this is particularly true when they are around unusual situations, such as large crowds. Keep the dog in a pen or on a leash to protect everyone, including your pet.
Trim the Trees
Trees can lose limbs, and these can hit someone who is visiting your home. Trim your trees regularly to remove dead branches and prevent this problem. If you notice a tree in your yard has died, have it removed. Should the tree fall on someone or someone’s property, like your neighbor’s car or house, you are personally liable.
Stop Unnecessary Falls
Tripping hazards are abundant in most yards. While you cannot avoid these completely, make sure your sidewalks and driveway are in good repair and do not pose a tripping risk. Fill in large holes in your yard, and remove branches or other debris to prevent unnecessary falls.
In the end, you are personally liable for ensuring that your home is a safe place to visit. While not all injuries are preventable, many are, and failure to do what is necessary to protect those who are visiting could lead to a lawsuit. Your insurance might cover this lawsuit, but you are far better off if you prevent the hazard to begin with.
Mario Cattabiani is the Director of Communications at Ross Feller Casey, LLP- a personal injury law firm helping people from Bethlehem and throughout Pennsylvania.