Believe it or not there are several hazards in a bathroom that can cause serious harm, especially to children and the infirm so it’s important to be aware of them and take suitable precautions to avoid the risks.
Whilst we do not want to be seen as scare mongering we have found that through working in bathrooms on a daily basis, we are finding that some home owners are compromising their safety without even realising the risks in regards to the design, and functionality of their bathrooms.
Going back to the history of bathroom design, the seventies and eighties was a time when we carpeted our bathrooms, and favoured curved designs. Whilst we hope this trend is in the past (along with avocado and apricot colour schemes), the upside was that it made for a very safe bathroom environment.
Nowadays, tiles and square edges is the most popular trend. There is a lot of pressure to choose aesthetics over practicality so many elements in current bathroom designs when combined, e.g. water, slippery tiles and sharp edged fixtures, can lead to serious or even fatal injuries.
So we urge you, when choosing the style and layout of your surfaces, toilet, basin, vanities, and fixtures such as towel rails, handles and tap-ware it is really important to consider the safety of your bathroom design.
In addition to risks of injury by falling the other dangers that must be considered are water temperature, pressure and the items you choose to store in your vanities such as electrical and cleaning products.
So as we at Get Plumbing , being true professionals who like to give simple, safe and sound advice to our customers please find below are our safety tips for the bathroom environment:
1. Always use bath mats/towels for stepping onto when you get out of the shower or bath. This reduces the risk of falling over especially when using non- slip mats or non slip tape.
2. If you are installing customer made cabinetry or work surfaces request that the corners are finished so they have a slight curve not a sharp corner.
3. Opt for rounded accessories – it’s a no brainer – square cornered towel rails, tap ware and handles can be fatal at impact. If you do go for square designs opt for one with slightly rounded off edges and corners. Some are much sharper than others.
4. Never use wall or gloss tiles on floor installations. Any tile shop should be happy to direct you to which tiles are non slip. If you have your heart set on a design – take a water spray or bottle with you to test their safety!
5. To avoid any serious injury, your water temperature should never exceed 50°C. This is very important if you have any young children and/or elderly living in your property, as the risk is significantly higher to these groups. Temperatures can easily be managed through an installation of a tempering valve or thermostatic mixing valve which prevents your hot water exceeding 50°C. Please see an extract below from the Department of Health.
6. Teach your children the dangers of turning your bathroom into a slip ‘n’ slide.
7. Always mop up all excess water on floors as quickly as possible. This helps to reduce the risk to others.
8. Store all bathroom cleaning products out of reach from your little ones. If consumed, they can lead to potential fatal illnesses that can cause death.
9. Ensure bathroom scales that use lithium batteries require a screwdriver to extract batteries. If a child swallows a lithium battery it will most likely cause death.
10. Keep all electrical goods away from water sources and if you have children in the house we recommend that you do not store them in the bathroom or you ensure sockets are installed at least 3 metres from any water source so they cannot come into contact whilst connected to the power supply.