Can Emergency Responders Find Your Home?
If you’ve ever received a call from people coming to your home for the first time stating, “I’m on your street, but I can’t find your house,” it may be time to check and update your house numbers. If your guests can’t find your home, first responders may not be able to either during an emergency.
You might not think about your house numbers on a daily basis, but making sure they’re visible can save your life. Every second counts when responding to an emergency call, and time spent trying to find your home is time wasted.
Numbers should be posted near the front door, above eye level, and within a well-lit area. While spelled out or fancy numbers may look nice, they’re harder to read from the street. Stick with basic Arabic numerals, at least four inches high. Make sure the numbers contrast the paint color of the house. For example, light colored walls should have dark numbers. Avoid bronze or brass numbers, they may look nice in the store, but they’re difficult to read on any background.
In addition to numbers on your house, it’s also smart to put numbers on your mailbox. Use a reflective material, which you can find at most hardware stores. If you do put numbers on your mailbox, make sure they’re on both sides. Anything you can do to make it easier for emergency responders to find your home, the better.
While having your house numbers painted on the curb can also be useful, be cautious of any notices posted to your home about curb painting. It is a common scam; someone will leave a notice that your house numbers will be painted on your curb for a fee. Contact your city to see if they require curb numbers and if it is a service they provide.
Some other things to keep in mind:
· Make sure that your house numbers are easily seen from 150 feet
· If your house is at the end of a long lane, or driveway, post house numbers near the street where cars enter your property
· Numbers should be easy to see in both the day and night
· Check periodically to make sure that trees, bushes or shrubbery don’t obscure your house numbers
· It is not necessary to include the street name on your house or mail box, especially if it forces a reduction in the physical size of the house numbers