Lets talk code and Safety Ideas

Many times questions come up about codes and safety.
A code is a "MINIMUM" requirement that provides safety to an individual, community or personal property. It is NOT the end result of maximum safety or security that is obtainable. We should always meet the code but not be stupid enough to ignore things that could take your family to the next level of safety and protection. Take for example, in Ohio it is NOT required that a fireworks store has fire suppression systems! That's the code. But the fireworks store owner put in sprinklers anyway. It cost him money, but he did a wise civil duty.
For my family I use to keep a large wrench at the main gas shut off for the house, Our gas meter and main shut off use to be inside the home and when I relocated it outside I installed a main shut off to the gas INSIDE the house, not a code requirement but a Fathers requirement. I put an easily operated ball valve in the main line. I did the same with the water supply. Why did I do this? During a tornado warning my kids know how to take cover and turn off the gas, electric and water supplies in a second! If they ever get trapped in the basement they wont drown, get electrocuted or die from fumes or an explosion if these precautions are taken. They even know how to shut the gas and water off at the street and pull the electrical meter if ever needed during an emergency. You may call me over reacting but I call it being smart. We had a tornado about 10 years ago and a family was trapped in a basement. Before their neighbor tried to help them he knew to pull the electrical meter and turn off the gas! The good Samaritan was an electrician who knew that to help others he had to remove those dangers to protect them and himself! So, you see, it isn't as stupid as you first may have thought! As adults my children may need this information to save someone else and not put themselves and families into jeopardy.
Another example of a code being short of total protecting of lives is what we have done.The code does not require them but we have escape ladders in every upstairs bedroom AND made my kids practice using them BEFORE a problem with fire! They practiced when they were 5 and 6 years old. They know what to do if the door outside their bedroom is hot, warn others while your escaping and going for help! No code can replace a parent having fire drills and training their children for different emergencies. I actually asked and received help from a fire department NOT in our village. We have a volunteer FD and I felt better getting our local larger community fire department to help me. They did, they actually came in a truck and did an inspection of our home and instructed our kids to fire safety and how to use extinguishers etc. I have six extinguishers in my home and they are the nicer large ones. A waste of money? Nope, many people drink and smoke, I don't. For one year supply of cigarettes and booze my family and property is protected! Two CO detectors one changed every year, five smoke alarms (one in each bedroom), and one of the handiest items are emergency lights that come on when power is lost. In our area they are used at least once a month! Can you imagine not taking these precautions and someday having a fire and forever hearing your kids screaming for help but you thought a $40 escape ladder was going 'too far' ? When do you think that parent will stop hearing those screams? When do you think that parent will ever forgive themselves?
I probably with the ladders have $600 invested and have increased my families safety level by an immeasurable amount.
So the code is nice, but it is a MINIMUM of everything. Use some common sense and take extra precautions when you see the need. Don't put off taking the extra step.
BTW, did you know that CO detectors may sound when you press the test button but all that button does is test the battery and the horn. CO detectors have a maximum shelf life of three years!!!! There are date codes on them and after three years of the date replace them! This is why I have two of them, I replace them alternately. Those of you who think CO's only danger is death have a lot to learn. Co is related to strokes, heart attacks, flu like symptoms, nerve damage, reparatory problems, sterilization and many many more problems are the result of this poison, and it doesn't take much for it to do its damage.
What about fire alarms, what is the replacement standard for them?
Rich
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Good suggestion ! When I lived in California we used to keep a wrench on the valve and I taught the wife how to shut it off in an emergency including how to shut off the water and power. Of course we didn't have tornadoes or even basements but we did have earthquakes and in 1989, when the Loma Prieta quake hit us, we quickly shut off the gas. The whole area wreaked of gas and I found myself running from house to house with my wrench shutting off gas for others. That cheap wrench may have saved all our homes!......thanks and take care, Ross
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I'll have to start drinking more so I can save more for next year.

I do hope that bedrooms is not the only place you have them.

Reasonable cost for what you have and a good investment.
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wrote in message

I think youmay have misquoted me....those lines are not in this thread....Ross
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wrote in message

Ross, I think he was quoting my first post and not yours.
Also, the bedrooms are the only upstairs rooms that require ladders.
Now, Ross, you brought out some good facts, I've never been to earth quake country and never considered those issues you mention. thanks for the reply
Rich
Thanks, Rich
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wrote in message

My appoligies....it was the geomans post....not mine...take care, Ross
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BTW, did you know that CO detectors may sound when you press the test button but all that button does is test the battery and the horn. CO detectors have a maximum shelf life of three years!!!! There are date codes on them and after three years of the date replace them! This is why I have two of them, I replace them alternately. Those of you who think CO's only danger is death have a lot to learn. Co is related to strokes, heart attacks, flu like symptoms, nerve damage, reparatory problems, sterilization and many many more problems are the result of this poison, and it doesn't take much for it to do its damage.
What about fire alarms, what is the replacement standard for them?
Rich
I rewire multi-unit apartment buildings in the area, if there are no fire alarms, I install hard-wired with battery backup, and a CO in the vicinity of the furnace, but not within about 15 feet or so. If there are hardwired detectors in place, I check the date. More than 10 years, and they will be replaced. My customers expect this from me now.
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Unless the smoke detectors are part of a professionally maintained system they should be replaced every ten years. The cost of having them tested to see that they are still sensitive enough to do the job exceeds the cost of replacement by wide margin.
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