Safety Tips for All Your Holiday Adventures
We’re all looking forward to some well-earned relaxation, peace, and joy this holiday season. And we don’t want preventable injuries to get in the way. So here are some proven and practical tips to keep kids safe and to give parents some peace of mind during all your holiday adventures.
On the Road
- Buckle up every ride, every time, whether it’s the long trip to visit family or around the block to the mall.
- Check your child’s car seat or booster before holiday travel. Seventy-three percent of car seats are not used or installed correctly, so check it before you hit the road. Here’s a quick car seat checklist to help you out. If you are having even the slightest trouble, questions or concerns, certified child passenger safety technicians are available to help or even double check your work. Find a Safe Kids car seat checkup event near you.
- Keep an eye out for distracted pedestrians and drivers who may not be paying attention to you, especially when backing out of parking spaces. Shopping center parking lots are busier during the holidays.
- Remind your teen driver to be extra alert during this holiday season when conditions are more challenging even for experienced drivers.
- Be a good role model by avoiding distractions. Commit to keeping your phone down. No text message or play list is worth the risk.
In the Home
- Keep medicine up and away, out of reach and sight of children, even medicine you take every day. Here is the safest way to dispose of expired and unwanted medication laying around the home and in medicine cabinets.
- Keep liquid laundry packets and cleaning products in their original packaging. Storing them in clear containers for laundry room aesthetics increases the potential for poisoning exposures for kids.
- Store guns securely – unloaded, locked, and separated from ammunition – to keep them out of children's reach and sight. Leaving guns unsecured – on a nightstand, table, or other place where a child can gain access – can lead to injuries and fatalities.
- When cooking, create a kid-free zone. Teach younger children to stay at least 3 feet away from your cooking space. Keep hot foods and liquids out of children’s reach. Cook on the back burners of the stove and keep hot foods away from the edge of your counters to prevent burns.
- Be aware of the hidden dangers around water beads. The danger is that young kids may be tempted to ingest water beads and may even mistake them as candy. They may also place them in their ears or nose where they can grow and cause harm. Once ingested they can expand and cause life-threatening intestinal blockages. To learn more about the dangers and what to do if your child swallows a water bead, visit the National Capital Poison Center’s webpage.
Holiday Gift Giving
- Read instructions and warning labels when choosing toys for children. Make sure the toy or game is appropriate for your child’s age and development.
- Separate toys by age. Toys intended for older children may contain small pieces, including button batteries, that can pose a risk to curious, younger siblings.
- Don’t forget a helmet. If you are giving a bike, skateboard or scooter this holiday season, be sure to include a helmet to keep them safe while they’re having fun.
- Stay up to date on toy recalls. Safe Kids Worldwide compiles product recalls specific to children and sends monthly email alerts for recent recalls.
- Keep harmful plants out of reach. Some popular holiday plants are poisonous to children and pets, including mistletoe and holly berries. In a poison emergency, call the national Poison Control Center at 1-800-222-1222.
- Be aware of devices with button batteries. Keep decorations with button batteries, such as greeting cards and small remote controls out of children’s reach.
- Water natural trees regularly. When needles are dry, they can catch fire easily.
- Turn off decorative lights before leaving home or going to sleep. Regularly check lights for exposed or frayed wires and loose connections.
- Keep candles and matches out of reach. Lit candles should be at least 12 inches away from anything that can burn, and don’t forget to blow them out when you leave the room or before you go to sleep. Store matches and lighters out of children’s reach and sight.
- Check smoke alarms. Make sure there is a working smoke alarm on every level of your home, inside bedrooms and near sleeping areas. Review your fire escape plan with family members and guests.
Have a happy and safe holiday season from everyone at Safe Kids.