One is just starting to think more strategic and forward thinking.... like designing a home with more safety features. Certainly one can add a grab bar to a shower but there are many more opportunities to do create safe and secure spaces. Here are five top ideas that can make spaces more safe and secure by addressing the exterior spaces first....
(1) Start outdoors. Place at least one set of house numbers where they can be very easily read by emergency personnel. Imagine the frustration by police, fire or ambulance drivers who can't find the one house they have been called to. And in such cases, time matters.
(2) Create a defined path to the front or main door that anyone - no matter age or ability - can navigate. Make it level and flat when possible. If the topography doesn't permit that, don't fall back to just building wooden ramps. Build walkways and paths thru the use of landscape features to raise the approach to the main entry door. And by the way, one foot rise for every twelve feet of path will be just right.
(3) Make sure there is plenty of lighting around the entry areas and above. Install a secondary set of lights to back up the main lighting fixtures because you never know when those light bulbs may go out,.. plus it's better to have more lighting in those critical areas and doing so will increase your home's security.
(4) Install two peep holes in the main doors... one at a standard height about 5 foot above the floor and a second one at 30" above the floor. Why? Imagine the ability to see someone who might be crouching and up to no good. Better to be safer than sorry.
(5) And a final thought,... in addition to a standard door knocker or door bell, install a wireless door bell system that can be heard from the main bedroom area. They are less than $30 at the big box lumber stores. That's a cheap price for such additional security.