Reflective numbers on houses can save lives
This week I want to talk about a situation that Public Safety deals with daily, sometimes several times a day.
When you have an emergency, time is critical.
Whether you need Law Enforcement, an Ambulance, the Fire Department, or even Animal Control our ability to respond quickly depends on us finding your residence in a timely manner.
I recommend you put a minimum 4” reflective numbers on both sides of your mailbox. You may ask why both sides? That way no matter which way Public Safety is traveling on the road in front of you home, its clearly marked. I also recommend numbers next to your front door, in addition to those on the mailbox, that way it removes any doubt as to the exact location of your home. If you don’t have a mailbox or live on a roadway where your mailbox is across the street, I would recommend you place a 4”x4” post next to your driveway with the same type and size numbers as above on both sides of the post. Make sure the post is a safe distance off the roadway as well as clear of the driveway, yet visible from the roadway. If you have the big brick enclosure type mailbox, make sure the numbers are on the face of your mailbox. If you live on a “driveway” where multiple homes are located off that “driveway”. Make sure your mailbox or 4”x 4” post at the driveway is clearly marked, and another post with numbers next to “your” driveway.
If you live in a Duplex or Apartment, make sure the numbers and/or letters are clearly marked on the door or beside the door. Some of you may live in a mobile home park where only the end of your home is visible from the street. Post the numbers on the front door side of the home high enough that the vehicles parked out front don’t block them.
If you have “vacant” land or property make sure it’s clearly marked with a 4” x 4” Post with numbers as described above. Public Safety gets trespassing call all the time and without markings it’s difficult to locate these properties.
On the other side of this situation, we locate unsecured properties, find people hunting illegally, and other criminal offenses where properties are not clearly marked. It’s time consuming to track down the owner of the property and ties up valuable resources trying to track you down.
We have seen may incidents where someone from inside the home had come out and flag down Public Safety, or flash the front porch light so we could locate a home. You may not always be able to go outside and “flag down” the responding units or you may not have the ability to flash the front porch light.
Again, our ability to find you is your responsibility. If you invite friends or family over for the first time and they are having trouble finding you, then odds are so will we. If friends say they recognized your vehicle in the driveway to find your house, you need to think we don’t know what you drive. If a delivery driver had a difficult time locating your home, then you should recognize this as indicators that a problem exists.
We all have elderly family, friends, fellow church members, neighbors, and coworkers that may need us sooner rather than later. Drive to their home and look to make sure it is marked clearly. If it’s not, offer to help them. Together we can all make our community safer.
Remember your life, the life of a family member, or friend visiting you may be depending on us finding your home.
Sgt. Dane Hunter of the Aragon Police Department has partnered with the Polk County Standard Journal to help provide information useful to local residents in keeping them safe and secure on the road and in their homes. Have questions? Contact the editor Kevin Myrick at kmyrick@ npco.com.