Most parents and carers with the challenging job and responsibility of looking after children will have the safety of these little ones at the forefront of their minds.
But reminders about how best to keep youngsters safe are always important, particularly given the potential dangers faced by children every day.
Child Safety Week (June 4-10), led by the Child Accident Prevention Trust (CAPT), is being supported by Northamptonshire Fire and Rescue Service(NFRS) in an effort to encourage families to learn more about how to keep children safe.
This week is being used by CAPT and its supporters to raise awareness of some of the risk areas for children, whether it is burns from hair straighteners or the potential for bath time drowning, and offer advice on how these dangers can be avoided.
Tina Collett, District Liaison Officer at NFRS, said: “It is true that being a parent or carer of children can seem like a minefield of potential dangers, ranging from scalds from neglected teacups to burns from unattended cooking.
“Sometimes just a little information and a gentle warning to busy parents and guardians can be enough to remind them of some of the safety measures they should routinely take in the home. Family life can be a busy, frantic time, not to mention a juggling act, but there must always be time to put safety first when it comes to protecting children.”
To support Child Safety Week, NFRS have put together some vital safety tips for families (see below).
For more information about keeping children safe, visit our Safety section.
Safety tips: Child Safety Week
- Hot cooker hobs, oven doors, kettles and saucepans are just a few of the dangers in the kitchen. Young children don’t have a reflex to pull away from something that is burning them, it’s something we learn. Push kettles to the back of the worktop and try to use the back rings on the hob. Keep children out of the kitchen while you are cooking if this is possible.
- Hot drinks are the main causes of scalds for the under-fives. Your hot drink can scald a baby 15 minutes after it has been made. Make sure hot drinks are out of the reach of children. Put babies down safely before you pick up your hot drink.
- Hair straighteners can get as hot as your iron and can still burn for a considerable time after they are switched off. Keep them out of the reach of children and put them in a heat-proof pouch or on a high shelf to cool.
- Use fireguards around fires and heaters, and move cots away from radiators to avoid burns.
- Bath water can seriously scald a child. Put cold water in first and top up with hot water, in case your toddler takes a tumble into the bath.
- If swallowed, a button battery can burn through a child’s throat and lead to serious internal bleeding and even death. Keep objects with accessible button batteries well out of young children’s reach.
- Children can have difficulty judging speed and distance until they are at least eight, and older children are still at risk. Make sure young children know to hold your hand, or use walking reins.
- Start to teach the Green Cross Code from around the age of five.
- Set a good example and avoid dashing across the road.
- Remind children not to talk or text on mobiles or listen to music when crossing the road and avoid doing so yourself.
- Make sure you use the right car seat for your child’s age, weight and height.
- Use a child car seat or booster seat for all children under 135cm and under the age of 12.
- Get your child into the habit of always wearing a helmet when cycling.
- Remember, babies can drown in as little as 5cm of water. Stay with your baby or young child when they’re in the bath and pull the plug as soon as you’re finished.
- In gardens, empty paddling pools after use.
- Keep matches and lighters out of sight and reach of young children.
- Check your smoke alarms. You need a working smoke alarm on every level of your home. Their warning could save a life. Test these alarms every month.
- With your family, work out the best route you can all use to get out of the house in the event of a fire. Keep stairs and escape routes clear of clutter.
- Does your child know his or her phone number and address? Teaching children these key details at a very young age can help keep them safe if they become separated from their family.
- Do you know where your child is? Make sure you know where your child is playing and spending their time.