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Safety and Injuries

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Home Safety Checklist

Your home should be a healthy, happy and safe place for your family. Children are naturally curious and learn from exploring the world around them. Sometimes we forget about how dangerous our homes can be, especially for young children. Removing hazards from your home will make sure your child has a safe space to explore.

The best way to check your home is to get down on the floor to see your home the way your child sees it. When you see something that is wrong, fix it right away or make a plan to fix it as soon as possible. Continue to check your home for unsafe areas often as your child grows and develops new skills.

Around your HOME
  • Remove the wheels from furniture
  • Place nightlights in your hallways
  • Make sure all walkways are clutter-free
  • Place all plants out of reach
  • Remove or secure all folding doors
  • Make sure that upstairs windows are secure – screens will not keep children from falling out
  • Make sure that small rugs are tacked down or are slip-free
  • Use outlet covers that attach to the electrical plate with screws. If you use plug-in style covers, make sure that they are joined together in the middle
  • Make sure that all floor mounted hot air registers are secure
  • Put carbon monoxide and smoke detectors near bedrooms and on every level of your home
  • Block access to areas that are under renovation or construction
  • Put a safety gate at the top and bottom of stairs – safety gates at the top of stairs need to be attached to the wall with screws.
  • Store small electronic devices and chargers out of reach and unplugged

In your KITCHEN
  • Put safety latches or locks on all cupboards and drawers
  • Store heavy pots and pan on the bottom shelves
  • Store small appliances unplugged and away from the sink
  • Put tablecloths away and use placemats instead
  • Get a high chair with a wide base that will not tip over
  • Make sure that your high chair and/or hook-on chair has safety straps that go around your child’s waist and that fit between your child’s legs
  • Place pots and pans on the back burners of the stove and keep the handles turned in
  • Stir and test foods and drinks warmed in the microwave before giving them to your child
  • Put a fire extinguisher near your kitchen exit, away from the stove
  • Try to keep children away from hot oven doors and stove elements. Tape a no-go zone around the stove
  • Fill a low cupboard with plastic bowls and containers that your child can play with safely

In you BEDROOMS
  • Bumper pads, heavy blankets, toys and pillows are not safe for use in cribs
  • Be sure that mobiles are placed out of your child’s reach
  • Place the crib, bed or playpen well away from other furniture, heat sources, windows and doors
  • Keep all four sides up on playpens and portable cribs
  • Make sure that pets do not sleep with your children
  • Use a plain nightlight – cute decorated nightlights can look like toys to young children
  • Make sure that your toy box has a lightweight lid with air holes or has no lid at all
  • When your child reaches 35 inches tall, it is time to move out of the crib. If moving into an adult bed, use safety rails to prevent your child from rolling out. Never use rails on toddler beds; the mattress is too small to support them.
    In your BATHROOM
    • Lock up all medications, vitamins and cleaners
    • Lock away all sharp objects (nail files, razors, etc.)
    • Keep electrical items unplugged and out of reach
    • Make sure that towel bars are attached firmly to the walls
    • Keep your toilet lid closed
    • Toilet bowl cleaners that stay in the tank are not safe to use when young children live in the home
    • Keep the bathroom door closed when the bathroom is not being used
    • Be sure that bathroom door locks can be opened from the outside
    • Place slip-free decals or mats on the floor of the tub
    • Test bath water with your elbow before your child gets in
    • Children under six years old should not be left alone in the tub, even in a bath seat. Bath seats are not safety items and can tip over. Your child can drown in as little as 5 cm (2 inches) of water
    • Turn down the temperature on your hot water tank to below 120 degrees Fahrenheit (49 degrees Celcius)

    In your FAMILY ROOM
    • Fasten reclining chairs so that the footrest cannot be lifted
    • Make sure heavy furniture such as bookcases, TVs and mirrors are attached tightly to the wall
    • Remove standing lamps or put them behind furniture
    • Arrange the heaviest items on the bottom shelves
    • Store newspapers out of reach because some ink is toxic
    • Remove coffee tables or put soft padding on hard corners and edges
    • Block access to fireplaces, and store all fireplace utensils out of reach
    • Make sure that all railings are secure
    • Window blind cords are secured and out of reach

    In your GARAGE, BASEMENT and LAUNDRY ROOM
    • Lock laundry rooms, workshops, attics and garages so children can’t enter without an adult
    • Store all woodworking, hobby, craft, gardening tools and supplies out of reach and unplugged
    • Make sure that the ironing board and iron are stored safely so that they will not fall down
    • Place wall-mounted garage door openers out of reach
    • Keep laundry soap, paint and chemicals out of reach
    • Store ignition keys away from equipment such as lawnmowers and ATV’s
    • Lock or remove the door from an unused fridge, dryer or freezer
    • Keep vehicles locked at all times

    In your YARD
    • Regularly check for and remove glass, metal, sharp sticks, insects or animal nests and collections of standing water
    • Remove animal feces, toadstools and mushrooms
    • Cover your sandbox when it is not in use
    • If possible, avoid having poisonous plants in your yard, or keep them away from the play area
    • Watch children when they are playing outdoors, especially when they are playing with pets or other animals
    • Ensure that swing sets and play equipment are age-appropriate and in good condition
    • Keep children away from lit or hot barbeques
    • Empty the water from kiddy pools after each use
    • Keep pool gates locked