Activity 19 – Following safety procedures

The alternate sense contributing to this activity is: touch.

The assistive procedure helpful for maintaining this activity is: touch.

  • Labeling
  • Modifying or developing techniques
  • Using Braille
  • Modifying objects or environment
  • Using low vision materials and non-optical devices or equipment

We will begin with:


Identify hazardous chemicals with tactile marks or tactile stickers. You can make these yourself with a Hi-Marks pen or with a Braille label maker, both available from low vision dealers.

Modifying or developing techniques

For good visibility, wear a light weight, white windbreaker in spring and summer, and a red or yellow jacket in winter.

Cross streets only at crosswalks, and don’t hesitate to ask for assistance.

Wear long, insulated mitts when opening the oven.

Before leaving the kitchen, always check your stove for heat by waving your hand slowly over it.

If you have a guide animal, remember to not allow it to be distracted while on duty.

If your guide animal disobeys your command, it is probably trying to keep you safe. Respect its opinion.

Fire is one of your worst enemies, and the kitchen is the likeliest place for it to start. Take every precaution to protect yourself from it, and don’t try to fight a fire if you have poor functional vision. Escape and call 9-1-1 immediately.

If you have functional vision, and a fire is small enough, do your best to put it out with an extinguisher, baking soda, or a pan lid. Never throw water on an electrical fire.

Your best approach is to avoid situations that can cause a fire in the first place. Here are some safety ideas:

  • Avoid wearing loose clothing or long hair while cooking
  • Unplug cords from all small appliances when not in use
  • Do not use electrical appliances near water, and keep cords away from heat sources
  • Turn pot handles inward on the stove
  • Keep cooking areas clear
  • Keep work surfaces clean
  • Remove large debris before starting a self-cleaning oven
  • Keep appliances in good working condition.

Modifying objects or environment

To avoid injury, keep cabinet doors closed or fully-open, keep drawers closed, and keep chairs pushed in under tables.

Remove or tape down scatter rugs that can cause tripping.

Wear comfortable and supportive shoes.

Trade your sharp-cornered coffee table for one with rounded corners.

Have furnace pilot lights shut off during warm seasons.

Tell your neighbors or neighborhood watch organization that you are visually impaired.

Insist that family members pick up after themselves.

Have a ground fault interruptor (GFI) installed on every outlet exposed to water. These are inexpensive and easy to connect, and they will shut off the outlet immediately if the electrical circuit is interrupted.

Keep electrical cords out of walkways.

Don’t lock yourself in the bedroom or bathroom.

Install and use handrails and grab bars.

Use nonskid products to clean and polish floors, and place non-skid mats where necessary.

Plug all devices with outdoor power lines into power surge adaptors.

To safely plug a cord into a socket, touch one hole to guide the prong. Remove your finger before inserting the plug.

Replace or refill fire extinguishers as labeled.

Take a self-defense course.

Using low vision materials and non-optical devices or equipment

Install smoke and carbon monoxide detectors. Test them regularly, and replace batteries if necessary.

Acquire a home protection system.

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