The Santa BarbaraCounty Fire Department has some suggestions to help you prepare your children for being home alone.
* Make sure your home is secure. Check doors and windows to make sure all locks are in working order.
* Check your home for fire hazards. Working smoke detectors should be installed on each level. They should be tested monthly and the battery should be changed annually. All appliances should be in good working order. Make sure matches, lighters and any flammable liquids are stored out of reach of children.
* Develop a home escape plan and practice it with your children.* A first aid kit should be stored where it can be found easily. Teach children basic first aid for minor cuts, burns or bleeds
.* Compile a list of important phone numbers and post them near the phone.
* Your child should know his or her phone number, address and any other information that could be helpful in an emergency
.* Spend time teaching your children personal safety rules. The “What If?” game will help them recognize and develop responses to certain situations.
* Establish house rules for your children.
* Check with your school for summer school programs that might be offered in your area .For your children, time home alone can be safe and secure with some planning.