Resolutions are hard to keep. In fact, most people give up on their resolutions before the end of January. But, not you. It’s a new year and a new you, so you’re going to do it! We believe in you.
So, whether you’re trying to reach a goal around losing weight, being more organized or saving money – it’s always helpful to take little steps each day. Those goals can also be supported by making sure you’re taking steps to stay safe around your home, family, electricity and natural gas.
To make it easy, we turned them into micro-resolutions – one for every month of the year – to keep you feeling safe and sound, all year round. And if you read this now, and forget later, rest assured that we’ll remind you and be your accountability partner for 2019.
January – Update your emergency call lists and print them, and post in a place for everyone in the home to see. Include: family members, neighbors, vets and doctors, fire and police departments, poison control (1-800-222-1222), and of course, your local utility. For DTE Energy, ensure you have our important numbers on-hand, including our gas leak line at 800.947.5000 and reporting a downed electric wire at 800.477.4747.
February – Clear your roof and walkways of icicles, snow or other debris, and make sure to salt any paths to electric or gas meters. A little bit of ice could cause a big fall, or a rogue icicle could mean something more painful. (Plus, large icicles could indicate poor insulation in your home – get it looked at and save money on your bills!)
March – Spring Forward: March 10 marks the start of daylight savings time. This is a perfect time to test and replace the batteries in your smoke and Carbon Monoxide detectors (and make sure they’re installed in the right places). Your life could depend on it.
April – Call 8-1-1 (MISS DIG) before you plant flowers, build a tree house or install that hot tub for the coming seasons. If you don’t, you could strike a cable, water line or gas/electric line. By calling before you dig, someone will mark what’s below so you don’t put yourself (or project) at risk.
May – Beware of overhead power lines and your service drop, the smaller (but extremely dangerous) wire that connects your home or business to the energy grid. Be sure to keep all ladders and lifts at least 20 feet away from service drops and overhead lines as well because coming into contact with energized electrical equipment can cause serious injury or death. If trees near power lines need trimming, we highly recommend you contact a trained professional to perform the work.
June – It’s national safety month! Your physical health is just as important as having emergency preparedness kits, and updated phone lists. Know the symptoms of heat exhaustion and stroke – make sure you drink plenty of fluids and look out for pale skin, headaches, dizziness, exhaustion and nausea.
July – Know how to spot the smell of a gas leak. If you smell rotten eggs (an odorizer called Mercaptan) or natural gas, immediately leave the area and get far away. Then call 9-1-1 and your local utility. Click here for more do’s and don’ts!
August – Check to see if your fire extinguishers need recharging. Check the small gauge at the top of the extinguisher. If the needle in that gauge is in the green, chances are, the extinguisher is okay. If it is in the red, you need to have the extinguisher recharged.
September – Keep at least 20 feet away (or an ambulance length) from downed wires, or pole-to-pole power lines at all times. Power lines are not insulated in the same way as your household wiring. That’s why they’re mounted well out of harm’s reach or buried in the ground.
October – Prepare a winter emergency kit for your automobile. Such kits can be a lifesaver if you are stuck out in bad weather while driving. Include items such as: blanket, flashlight, batteries, water, non-perishable snacks, shovel, flares, reflective hazard triangle, jumper cables, cat litter or sand for traction, ski hat and gloves.
November – Fall back! November 3 is another signal to check or replace your batteries and ensure things are working properly. It’s also a time to remind yourselves and family members about the warning signs of carbon monoxide poisoning. It’s odorless, tasteless, and colorless – a silent killer you want to avoid!
December – Holidays mean cooking and cold weather. Cooking means using natural gas appliances and the cold means using furnaces and space heaters more. Make sure your stoves and ranges are cleared and have ample space surrounding them so as not to cause any fires. Plus, make sure your appliances are properly vented and cleaned for all that extra use.
And remember, safety is a 24/7/365 job!