Does Your Home Defense Plan Include A Safe Room?
Do you have a plan of action so you and others in your family know what to do in the event you are broken into? I would venture to say that most people don’t! However, it is a good idea to have a Home Defense Plan that includes a Safe Room in case someone forcibly enters your home while you and your family are there. The general intent of a safe room is to provide short-term protection for family members until the police arrive or the attackers leave your home.
It is a fact of life today that burglaries, home intrusions, home invasions, and kidnappings are happening at an alarming rate. We are all encouraged to have a Personal Plan of Action in case we are attacked on the street but sometimes we forget to have a well-thought out plan for some sort of attack in our home.
The very nature that someone would forcibly enter your home, especially while you and your family members are there, means the intruder is serious about burglarizing your home either for your possessions, valuables, money, or worse yet – kidnapping someone. The fact that you are there and could identify the intruder means there is a good chance you may be harmed or even killed. One other thing to consider is you or a family member may be taken as a hostage.
Hopefully this situation will never happen to you, but in today’s violent crime ridden world my suggestion would be to take all necessary precautions to prevent it from ever happening to your family.
Your Home Defense Plan should also include setting up a safe room. You should plan ahead of time what actions you and other family members will take in the event of a break-in or home invasion. A vital part of such a plan is to set up a defensive core area in your home called a safe room.
The safe room is the room that is most likely to be the safest location for you and other family members during a break-in. If someone breaks in while you or your family area at home you can retreat to your safe room, lock the door, and call the police for help.
The room you select may be the main bedroom in your home. (Or it could be a main bathroom). Whatever location you decide, check the doors to this room for strength and ability to withstand a major kick to bust open. These doors, like your main entry door, should be solid hardwood or metal doors. The interior doors in most homes are flimsy, hollow-core wood doors. You will also want to install quality deadbolt locks on the doors to your safe room.
If you have young children, infants or toddlers you may want to make their room the safe room. It will be easier for you or other adults to retreat to the children’s room rather than to get the children out of their room and into yours. You should follow the same instructions on their doors if you select your child’s room as the safe room.
Make sure the safe room is equipped with the following items:
- A telephone for calling the police. If possible, use a cell phone in your safe room. Criminals can totally disable standard wired phones and cordless phones simply by cutting the phone line to your home or taking on extension off the hook. When you call 911, your billing address is displayed on the 911 screen, so remember to give your home address just in case it’s different from your billing address.
- Remember that a cordless phone requires the base unit to be plugged into the standard phone line in your home. If the phone line is cut or unplugged, your cordless phone is dead. However, a cell phone transmits and receives signals through the air and doesn’t require standard phone lines. You will just need to make sure it is always charged and ready for use.
- A flashlight. You may need a flashlight if the intruder turns off the power to your house. Also, if it’s late at night you may want to leave the lights off anyway. Ensure you have extra batteries or a fully charged rechargeable flashlight.
- If there is a window in your safe room, keep an extra set of house and car keys* in that room. When the police arrive, you can throw your house keys to the police from the window of your safe room. (You may even want to have a glow stick to attach to your keychain in case you have to toss the keys out a night). These keys will allow the police to quickly enter your home while you remain secure in your safe room. Additionally, if you are able to escape, you will have your car keys available.
- Personal Protection device(s) of your choice (permitted by law). Pepper or Mace Spray, C2 Taser, Advanced Taser, and Stun Guns are all non-lethal protection devices that can provide some take down power-possibly enough for you to escape to safety. If an intruder has made it this far into your home and is coming after you, he is intent on doing you grave harm. You may have to use everything in your arsenal to save your life. Remember at this point your main concern is saving your life and the life of any family member with you. You can deal with the other stuff later.
- A small folding ladder to escape out of a window if your safe room is on the second or third level.
* If your car keys have an alarm button, you could activate the car alarm from your safe room.
Noise is a deterrent and an audible alarm may alert the intruder/s to the fact that the
situation is known to others.
After you have decided upon the location of your safe room and equipped it properly, finish developing your home security defense plan by determining the actions that you and other members of the household will take in the event of an intrusion or break-in.
Discuss these actions with all members of the family. Be sure they understand what they are supposed to do and where they should go. For example, one family member might be responsible for calling police while another person notifies the other family members to retreat to the safe room. Practice your home defense plan and review it often. Evaluate your plan from time to time and make any changes that are deemed appropriate.
One last suggestion to consider would be to install a good quality home security system that monitors your home 24/7 for any type of break-in or intrusion. You’ll have a loud alarm going off inside your home as well as alerting the local police authorities. You could also have a several remote panic alert buttons in various locations in your home to notify authorities immediately if a threatening situation arises. Keeping one in your bedroom near a nightstand means it is right there if you need it.
We have had a home security system for over 25 years and believe every home should have one. A 24 hours monitored security system fits perfectly into any Home Defense Plan.