Dec 2011

How safe is your child?

Advice and Events

Children are often exposed to high levels of risk at home, on the road, at school and at play. As adults, caregivers and parents, we must take responsibility and make sure that our children learn, play and grow up in a safe environment without the threat of being hurt.

Many childhood injuries and deaths are preventable if some simple safety habits are practised. A good place to start is in the home, which is the most common place where children are injured.

What you can do
  • Lock all dangerous household cleaning items, paraffin and insecticides in a secure place out of children’s sight and reach.
  • Lock all medicines away safely – throw away unused or expired prescription medication safely – your pharmacist will be able to assist you.
  • Always supervise children in baths, around swimming pools and dams, and don’t leave open buckets of water where children can get to them.
  • Hot water burns like fire, so keep all hot objects, boiling kettles and pots out of reach of prying fingers.
  • Cook with care. Never leave food unattended on the stove and turn pot handles to the inside of the stove.
  • Don’t leave children unattended around candles, open flames or fires, and make sure that matches are out of reach.
  • Ensure electrical cables are safely secured and out of the way. Don’t run cables under carpets – they can be damaged by people trampling on them.
  • Fit electrical sockets with safety plug covers.
  • Lock guns and ammunition away safely, preferably in a gun safe.
  • Do not leave plastic bags lying around – children can suffocate themselves.
  • Get rid of old fridges, stoves and cars in the yard – they are fun places to play, but doors can easily jam and cannot be opened from the inside.
  • Lock your car when it is parked and keep the keys with you. Children can easily lock themselves in, or release the handbrake and set the car in motion.
  • Warn children about the dangers of talking to strangers or accepting lifts from strangers.
Safety and Security
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