|Electronic Security Association ensures working smoke alarms on each floor and outside of every sleeping area
Each year, more than 3.4 million children experience an unintentional injury in their homes. To help keep little ones safe, the Electronic Security Association (ESA) recommends these safety tips.
Keep dangerous items out of reach
The National Capital Poison Center reported that 52 percent of all poisoning victims in 2012 were under the age of 12. To ensure children don’t become a part of the statistic, it’s important to take extra precautions to keep them away from dangerous household items.
Designate a cabinet or two that are only accessible by adults for potentially hazardous items. Common household products that could be fatal if ingested include cleaning supplies; medicine; alcohol; dishwasher and laundry detergent; and personal hygiene items such as perfume, mouthwash, nail polish and nail polish remover. To further reduce child’s risk, install child-proof locks on each cabinet’s doors.
It’s also especially important to keep an eye on prescription medication. According to the C.S. Mott Children’s Hospital National Poll on Children’s Health, every 10 minutes a young child in the U.S. is taken to the emergency room because of possible poisoning from swallowing a prescription or over-the-counter medicine. If taking medication, make sure to always secure the child-resistant cap before stowing it away in a medicine cabinet that is by children.
Childproof home to avoid injury
Pay attention to the areas where potentially harmful objects in home are kept as well as who has access to those areas. It is crucial to take extra steps to protect children from accidentally obtaining weapons. In a report by The New York Times, 84 percent of accidental gun deaths of children under the age of 15 occurred in their home or the home of an acquaintance or relative. Many of these deaths could have been avoided if the firearms had been safely stored by the gun owners. Guns should always be kept in a locked cabinet with the key out of reach of children. Never leave firearms around the house or try to hide them in closets or unlocked drawers.
To further ensure that firearms don’t accidentally end up in the wrong hands, consider investing in smart home technology that allows to monitor activity in areas of home designated as off-limits. Smart home technology can notify on smart phone or tablet should someone enter a restricted area - perhaps a bedroom where a locked gun cabinet is stored.
Watch out for electrical and fire hazards
Electrical shocks can be avoided by equipping every outlet in your home with child safety covers that keep children from inserting items into the sockets. Unused adapters and cords should be kept out of reach so that children cannot chew or play with them. It’s also important to stress to children that water and electronics don’t mix and can be very harmful when combined. Take extra steps to ensure children are unable to reach electric appliances while they are in or near water.
Every day, more than 300 children under the age of 19 visit the emergency room for burn-related injuries. You can protect children from burns and home fires by never allowing them to start or be alone with an active heat source such as a stove, fireplace or grill. Children should not be permitted to cook, light candles or handle a lighter or matches without adult supervision.
Even if you take extra steps to prevent fire in your home, there is no guarantee that it won’t happen. To protect loved ones from a deadly fire, make sure home is equipped with working smoke alarms on each floor and outside of every sleeping area. It’s especially important to change the batteries of alarms twice a year and to test them monthly. Also, talk to children about how they can escape if a fire begins in your home and practice your escape plan as a family.