August 14th, 2012 by adm1n
The home environment has many hidden drowning hazards for children. Drowning deaths can occur not only in pools and spas, but in bathtubs, toilets and buckets. Keep these safety tips in mind to make your home safer from these hidden hazards.
- Keep doors to bathrooms and laundry rooms closed.
- Large 5-gallon buckets are common household items and may be a potential hazard. Empty all buckets, containers and wading pools immediately after use. Store them upside-down and out of children’s reach.
- Keep toilet lids closed and use toilet seat locks. According to the CPSC, toilets are overlooked as a source of drowning in the home – toddlers can fall headfirst into the toilet.
- Once bath time is over, immediately drain the tub.
- Always stay within an arm’s reach of your child when he or she is in or near pools, spas, bathtubs, toilets or buckets.
- Never leave your child unattended in a tub or around any other body of water, even if he or she knows how to swim.
- Never leave your child alone or in the care of older children during bath time.
- Children in baby bath seats and rings must be watched every second.
- Learn adult and infant CPR.
DID YOU KNOW?
- One-third as many children under age 5 drown from other hazards around the home as drown in pools (CPSC).
- Two-thirds of drowning deaths in the home, not including pools, occur in bathtubs (CPSC).
- Home swimming pools are the most common place for a child younger than age 5 to drown.
- Tips to Prevent Drownings at Home
For more info please visit: Safety Kids USA
Photo by Will Merydith
July 11th, 2012 by adm1n
Having been raised along the coast and within walking distance of the beach, my family loved to barbecue as often as possible. We would fill our hibachi with charcoal, pour on a generous amount of lighter fluid, throw a lit match on top, and voila, an impressive fire would kindle the briquettes to a deep red glow. The trouble was, sometimes the fire was not big enough to start the charcoal. I would, as a 7 or 8 year old, squirt lighter fluid on the small fire to speed things along. Looking back I wonder where my parents were, and how I managed to avoid igniting myself as the fluid streamed out of the can! To help in this outdoor season, the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) has outlined a few “grilling safety tips.”
- Propane and charcoal BBQ grills should only be used outdoors.
- The grill should be placed well away from the home, deck railings and out from under eaves and overhanging branches.
- Keep children and pets away from the grill area.
- Keep your grill clean by removing grease or fat buildup from the grills and in trays below the grill.
- Never leave your grill unattended.
- There are several ways to get the charcoal ready to use. Charcoal chimney starters allow you to start the charcoal using newspaper as a fuel.
- If you use a starter fluid, use only charcoal starter fluid. Never add charcoal fluid or any other flammable liquids to the fire.
- Keep charcoal fluid out of the reach of children and away from heat sources.
- There are also electric charcoal starters, which do not use fire. Be sure to use an extension cord for outdoor use.
- When you are finished grilling, let the coals completely cool before disposing in a metal container.
Check the gas tank hose for leaks before using it for the first time each year. Apply a light soap and water solution to the hose. A propane leak will release bubbles. If your grill has a gas leak, by smell or the soapy bubble test, and there is no flame, turn off the gas tank and grill. If the leak stops, get the grill serviced by a professional before using it again. If the leak does not stop, call the fire department. If you smell gas while cooking, immediately get away from the grill and call the fire department. Do not move the grill.
These tips can be viewed in a safety poster the NFPA published.
Photo was taken by Tanjila Ahmed.
About the author:
Jack C. Putnam grew up in Laguna Beach California. He spent two years teaching and doing humanitarian service in Africa as a young adult. He earned a bachelor’s degree in Child Development/Family Science, and a master’s degree in School Psychology. Jack is married and has 5 children and 4 grandchildren.