Swine flu masks are all the rage these days. News report after news report shows people in various walks of life and living in various countries happily (or unhappily) sporting a mask. So, are they really that helpful?
It all depends. What really helps is avoiding crowds in infected areas, washing your hands thoroughly and practicing good general hygiene. That being said, if you are going into crowds, or if there have been a number of infections in your area, then yeah, its probably a good idea. So, what kind should you get? Well, there are a number of different options out there, the CDC and others give some recommendations, but ideally, it would be a mask specifically designed to help protect against the flu. Here’s an example of one that would make a good swine flu mask
, an NIOSH approved N95 respirator mask.
Good luck and stay healthy!
Home security is usually one of the last things on people’s minds as we head into the beautiful world of spring and prepare for those summer vacations. Unfortunately for us, its not even remotely the last things on a potential burglar’s mind. So, here are a few tips to remember for home security at this time of year, especially if you’re taking a vacation.
- Trim bushes and trees that are close to the house. Keeping these trimmed will remove a handy hiding place for a potential intruder.
- Let neighbors know when you are going on vacation. This is good for two reasons. One, so that your neighbor can keep an eye on your house and notify police if there is anything suspicious going on. Two, so that you can have them collect your mail. Nothing says, “I’m not home, come rob me” like a week’s worth of mail on the front porch.
- Close your garage doors and lock them if possible. An insane number of burglaries are committed through the garage, and its incredibly easy to prevent. But, even if they don’t make it into your home, you don’t really want them stealing all of your tools out of your garage, do you?
- Last but not least..get a security system (you knew it was coming eventually). They’re incredibly affordable and provide a measure of security above everything I just mentioned.
A Pool Alarm is an important part of home safety and security, but sadly, many homeowners consistently overlook this life saving device. So first, what is a pool alarm?
A pool alarm
is a device that attaches to the side of your pool, with a sensor in the water. If any object weighing more than 18 pounds(pet, child, lawn chair) falls into the pool when the alarm is set, it will sound a loud siren at the pool itself and on a base receiver placed in your home, with a range of up to 200 feet.
Why do you need this? Well, the reasons should be clear for anyone who has a family or even has friends or relatives visiting with children. It only takes a short time for a child to fall into a pool and drown. In that scenario, every second counts, and a pool alarm will give you the means to immediately respond.
Still don’t think you need one? Here are some sobering facts (source: CDC
- In 2005, there were 3,582 fatal unintentional drownings in the United States, averaging ten deaths per day.
- More than one in four fatal drowning victims are children 14 and younger.¹ For every child who dies from drowning, another four received emergency department care for nonfatal submersion injuries.1
- Nonfatal drownings can cause brain damage that may result in long-term disabilities including memory problems, learning disabilities, and permanent loss of basic functioning (i.e., permanent vegetative state).
And just how serious is the problem for small children (also from the CDC):
Children: In 2005, of all children 1 to 4 years old who died, almost 30% died from drowning.1Although drowning rates have slowly declined,1, 3 fatal drowning remains the second-leading cause of unintentional injury-related death for children ages 1 to 14 years.4
If you have children, I’m not trying to freak you out. However, I do hope you’re a little scared. You need to realize the importance of having adequate protection for your children when playing in your swimming pool. There’s simply too much at risk not to be prepared.
The brand new Ademco 5870API is a Wireless Indoor Asset Protection Sensor. Which is a long way of saying that its a small wireless device that attaches to your home or office valuables and notifies your alarm panel if those valuables are being moved. It will communicate with any Ademco security system that accepts their 5800 wireless technology.
Ok, so what does it do? You place the sensor which is 1.8″ x 1.7″ x 0.63″ on any device that you want to protect and that shouldn’t be moving. So, this would be a computer, jewelry box, television, safe, etc. You set the sensitivity to one of three settings. Setting 1 is a hyper-sensitive setting, which should only be used for completely fixed items that have no real vibration as a normal part of their placement. So, this wouldn’t be a good idea for a computer monitor where you come in, bump your desk as you sit down and the thing vibrates for a few seconds. It would, however, be a good idea for a heavy safe that you have mounted in your closet, which won’t be vibrating anyway. That setting means that movement for 1-3 seconds will cause the sensor to notify the panel. The second option (the right one for the computer or computer monitor) is the Standard Security Mode. In this setting the sensor will notify your alarm panel after 5-8 seconds of movement. The third option is for Tilt Mode. This would be for a device (like a jewelry box) that has a lid or a door and will be tilted (when opened, for example). In this case, the sensor will notify the panel after the sensor is tilted greater than 30 degrees.
Ok, so whats the actual benefit of this thing? I mean, if your home is armed at night, this doesn’t offer much benefit because the burglar should have already tripped the alarm before he picks up the jewelry box. The main utility is for people who have access, but shouldn’t be taking things. So, for example, if you have a maid service come (or any interior work by an outside contractor), you may want this device to protect your belongings, even though the crew is supposed to be in your home. This device, however, isn’t just for residential applications. It would also work great for a museum or business where people are coming in and out all of the time but aren’t supposed to be leaving with anything.
The item comes in at the low cost of $79.00 and comes in either grey (dark grey) or white. If you are a homeowner with lots of outside workers in your home, or if you are a business owner, you need this device. Stop by SafeMart and get one today!
Our friends accross the pond have come up with a great idea: give DIY vouchers to homeowners to beef up their home security. The reason is that police fear that crime will increase during the recession. And, we all now that a great way to avoid being burglarized is to have a home security system. So, if you choose to do it yourself, you’ll get a voucher to help defray some of the cost.
This whole thing even makes sense economically (believe it or not). Police spend time and money repsonding to burglaries and other home invasions. According to a study found in the Washington Post, homes with security systems are three times less likely to be broken into than homes without security systems. Thus, less burglary = less police time = less taxpayer money. Now, I know they’re spending taxpayer money to give the vouchers, but it’ll probably come out in a wash. And, even if it doesn’t, at least they’re putting your money to something useful.
Access control systems are quickly becoming the first line security measure of choice for businesses and some homeowners. These systems have been used by big companies for years, but haven’t really taken off among small business owners. A high price tag and perceived lack of necessity have both contributed to this mindset. Well, hopefully we can change that.
These systems are now much more affordable. The above link shows you SafeMart’s offering, and after a quick perusal you will see that a small business can easily afford a good access control system.
As to a perceived lack of necessity, this is a little trickier. It may be true that you don’t absolutely need one, but the benefits offered far outweigh the cost. They protect your business, many systems allow you to view a log of who entered and when, and they remove the hassle of distributing keys and needing to change locks when employees leave under bad circumstances or lose keys. If you need to, you can change an employee’s password or remove someone from entering the building. Its incredibly simple and it does a great job of securing your home. If you are small business owner, you owe it to yourself and your company to look and see if an access control system is right for you.