Keeping The Christmas Season “Merry And Bright (and SAFE)”!!

 

Christmas time is just around the corner and with that comes celebrations, decorations, new toys and travel.  Safe Kids Grand Forks wants to provide some safety tips that will keep your holiday safe.  It gets to be a busy time of year, but please pause and keep safety a big priority!!

Toy Shopping:

-  Toys come with recommended ages on them.  This has to do with not only the developmental level of children but also should alert parents to the potential for parts or pieces that may be a choking hazard.  If a toy has parts small enough to fall through the center of a toilet paper roll, then it should not be played with by a child under 3 years of age. 

-  Use caution with toys that use batteries, especially if there are young children that may put the batteries in their mouth.  Assure that the battery compartment has a “screw-on style” cover.

-  For older children that may be getting sporting gear such as bike, scooters, skates, or sleds, be sure to consider the safety gear that should accompany those items (helmets, elbow/knee pads, etc.).  Safe Kids Grand Forks has a wide variety of helmets on hand for kids – adults.  Bike helmets are $7.00, Multi-sport helmets (used for riding scooters, skateboards, etc.) – $12.00 and winter sports helmets are $22 (come with weatherized padding and goggle attachments).

Decorating:

– When using lights and other decorations, multiple cords plugged into an outlet should be avoided, as well as extension cords.  If extension cords are used, be sure they are not under rugs (in people’s pathways) or for outside use, in areas where snow removal equipment may be used.

-  Flameless candles provide a great alternative to ones with actual flames.  Decorating with open flames in homes with pets or small children, or near garland can be a source for a fire. 

-  Use caution and avoid using heat lamps/lights for lighting of displays near hay (i.e. nativity scenes, etc.)

– If there are small children in the home, don’t place decorations that look like candy or other treats on areas of the tree that they can reach.

-  If using a real tree, assure that it is cut fresh and is well watered.  Do not leave lights on the tree when it is unattended.

-  Mistletoe berries, Holly Berry and Jerusalem Cherry are plant types that can be poisonous.  Call 1-800-222-1222 if you suspect a poisoning has occurred.

Cooking Safety: 

-  A major cause of home fires is unattended cooking in the kitchen.  Don’t become distracted with guests or other projects when cooking in the kitchen.  If you have to leave the kitchen, turn off the burners or heat sources.

-  Keep alcohol and baking extracts (they contain alcohol) out of reach of young children.

– Make sure your home has working smoke detectors.

Travel Safety: 

-  No matter how far you go, be sure that ALL passengers are buckled up on ever ride.  If you are traveling by airplane, check on their regulations as it relates to taking car seats on board the plane (kids are safest when buckled up on a plane as well).  Assure that car seats are available at your destination if you don’t take them with you.

-  When traveling, be sure that all items in the car are secured so they don’t become a projectile.

-  Don’t drink and drive.  Plan ahead for a designated driver if you plan to consume alcohol.

These are only a few of the many tips that Safe Kids Grand Forks offers to keep kids and families safe during the holiday season.  No party, event or family gathering would be the same if there were an unintended injury or death due to failure to take precautions.  So, to you and yours we wish you a  “Merry & Safe Christmas from all of us at Safe Kids Grand Forks!!

Need more inforation:  Contact us at safekids@altru.org, check our web site at www.safekidsgf.com or become our friend on Facebook (Safe Kids Grand Forks).