Posted: March 12, 2015
You’ve probably seen panic buttons before. Under bank clerk desks and behind convenience store counters are two of the more common places to see them. Panic buttons are designed to send a direct signal to authorities that you’re under distress and need immediate help. Most are silent to those nearby, meaning you can calmly alert the police without a burglar or home intruder being aware. This can mean authorities arrive in time to nab the criminal. While panic buttons are a useful addition to any security system, knowing where to put them can be tricky, and so you’ll need to strategize.
Panic buttons should be hidden from plain sight but easy to access. This means hiding them in common rooms that are usually occupied while you and your family are home. Living rooms, family rooms, kitchens, and bedrooms are all places where you can place panic buttons in order to help provide extra safety throughout the whole house.
As mentioned above, panic buttons are meant to serve as added but discreet security. To keep them out of sight, but within reach, secure your panic buttons under counters, tables, desks, or in secret places like large vases or behind TVs. When you have a panic button that’s clearly visible, chances are whoever has invaded your home will spot it immediately and detain you from pressing it.
If you put your panic button underneath the kitchen counter, it’s in a location where you may accidentally press it. Any location with significant traffic could lead to the same result. Place your panic button away from couches, countertops, pantry and cabinet doors, etc. In a lot of cases, you can be fined for falsely notifying the police of a potential threat. Not only does it bring authorities to your home ready to address any threat, but it also takes them away from any other serious crimes that may be happening.
Panic buttons have only one set mode of operation: notify police when pressed. This means that, regardless of the situation, the police will arrive at your doorstep within minutes of the panic button being pressed. Along with this extra sense of security, there comes a certain level of responsibility. The real reason for a panic button is to alert the police of an immedihreat to the safety of you or your family. You shouldn’t press the button when your neighbors are being loud, or when you see suspicious activity outside of your home, like neighbors fighting. This is what 911 is for.
Everyone in your household should know that panic buttons are serious things. Without proper explanation about what the panic button does, you might find your kids pressing it for fun. To avoid this scenario, explain the importance of the button and that the police will come to the house whenever the button is pressed. Explain to them that they should only press the button in certain situations. If you aren’t sure if your very young kids can keep themselves from pressing the button, install it where they can’t reach.
When you make the decision to add a panic button to your home, you need to think carefully about where to place it and to have a discussion with your family about its use. Ensure that you and your family understand the responsibility of the panic button. Once you cover that ground, you’ll be good to go.