Last Saturday, my family was invited out to a fun museum in downtown Salt Lake for #SafetySaturday. It was hosted by Primary Children’s Hospital, with a goal to get us talking about safety with our kids.
No matter how old you are, I think we all can use a good refresher on all of these safety tips. Listed below are the top tips for keeping kids safe, which also means these are the reasons they are seeing kids needing urgent care.
I realize most of you don’t stop by NoBiggie for posts like this, but if I can use this site for good in any way, I think this is a conversation worth having.
1. Wear Helmet:
· Head injury is the leading cause of death in bicycle/motor-vehicle related crashes. Wearing a helmet is one of the best ways to lower your risk of head injury and death in crash. Studies show bicycle helmets reduce the risk of serious head injuries by 85-88%.
· 23% of elementary school-age bicyclists, 14% of secondary school-age bicyclists, and 58% of adult bicyclists wear helmets (2007).
· 92% of bicyclists killed in crashes were not wearing a helmet.
· Tip: A helmet is the single most effective safety device available to reduce head injury. A helmet should sit on top of the head in a level position, and should not rock forward, backward, or side to side. The helmet strap should always be buckled. When using other wheeled objects such as scooters, Wiggle cars, skate boards and so forth a proper helmet should be worn.
· Wear a helmet to protect your thinker!
2. Always buckle up in seat belts and carseats:
· Correctly used car seats can reduce the risk of death by as much as 71 percent.
· People who were unrestrained (not buckled up) are 31 times more likely to die in a crash than those who were restrained.
· Tip: We know that when adults wear seat belts, kids are more likely to be buckled up. So be a good example and buckle up for every ride. Be sure everyone in the vehicle buckles up, too.
· If you “Love ‘Em, Buckle ‘Em”.
3. Spot the Tot:
· Each year in Utah, an average of 64 children under age 10 are struck or run over and are killed by a motor vehicle on private property.
· In more than half the deaths the driver was a family member of the victim.
· Tip: With nice weather here children play outside more. Before you get in the car, walk all the way around the parked vehicle to make sure children are not under, beside, or behind it. Properly supervise young children when a vehicle will be moving – Spot the Tot!
· Shoes don’t wear out with a quick walk around the car!
4. Never Leave Your Child Alone in the Car:
· Between 1998 and 2011, nearly 525 children died as a result of being left alone in a car.
· When left in a hot vehicle, a child’s body temperature can increase three to five times as fast as an adult’s.
· Your car’s internal temperature can increase by 19 degrees Fahrenheit in only 10 minutes.
· Tip: Never leave your child alone in the car, not even for a minute and make sure to lock your vehicle, including doors and trunk when you’re not using it. Keep keys and remote entry out of the reach of children.
· Heat should be used to bake a cake, not kids!
5. Water safety:
· Despite a 40 percent decline since 1987, drowning is still the second leading cause of unintentional injury related death to children ages 1 to 9, taking more than 900 children’s’ lives each year.
· Drowning is a quick and silent killer. In the time it takes to…
o Cross the room for a towel (10 seconds), a child in the bathtub can become submerged.
o Answer the phone (2 minutes), that child can lose consciousness.
o Sign for a package at your front door (4 to 6 minutes), a child submerged in the bathtub or pool can sustain permanent brain damage.
· Tip: Put the cell phone away, forget about all the other things you have to do and give young children 100 percent of your attention when they are near or around water.
· “Other things” can wait but kids can’t!
6. Window Falls:
· Each year in the United States, 15 to 20 children under the age of 11 die and nearly 15,000 are injured from window falls.
· Children are more likely to be hurt after a fall from a window than from any other type of fall.
· Tip: Never depend on screens to keep children from falling out of windows. Screens keep bugs out, not kids in!
· Screens keep bugs out but you keep kids in!
· In 2011 (in Utah), 886 pedestrains were struck by moving vehicles, 770 were injured and 32 were killed.
· 34% of pedestrian injuries happened in a marked cross-walk
· 33% of drivers who hit pedestrians were turning. Drivers need to watch for Pedestrians before turning.
· Tip: Remind kids to make eye contact with drivers before crossing the street and to watch out for cars that are turning of backing up. Children under 10 should cross the street with an adult. Every child is different, but developmentally, it can be hard for kids to judge speed and distance of cars until age 10.
· Use your peepers, look both ways.
For more safety tips and answers to any health question you and your kids might have, you can visit: Kids Health.