General Household Tips
By the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission
Clothing:Drawstrings on children's
clothing pose strangulation and entanglement hazards. Hood or
neck drawstrings can strangle a child if they get caught on such
items as playground equipment or cribs. Remove drawstrings from
hood and the neck area of outerwear including jackets and
sweatshirts. CPSC recommends that consumers purchase children's
outerwear with alternative closures, such as snaps, buttons, or
Velcro, instead of long, loose drawstrings.
Dressers and shelves: Young children can be killed when
furniture tips over. These children can climb on a lower drawer
that has been pulled out and use it as a step. This can cause the
dresser to tip over. Use latches on lower drawers to ensure that
drawers are not opened by young children or use angle braces or
anchors to secure furniture to a wall.
Toys: Babies use their mouths to learn about the world
around them. At two months old they can usually grip small
objects. Keep tiny objects out of reach of your baby, especially
SMALL BALLS, MARBLES and BALLOONS. Smooth round objects present
the highest risk of choking. Uninflated balloons and balloon
pieces can easily be inhaled into the lungs. Be sure to check the
labeling on the toy for the appropriate age for safe use.
To prevent poisoning: Children may try to eat
cake deodorizers used in pails (such as diaper pails). Keep
containers that use these deodorizers securely closed.
Child-resistant packaging is not child proof. Keep all medicines,
iron-containing vitamins and household cleaning products,
including those with child-resistant packaging, locked away from
children. Keep poisonous plants out of children's reach.
To prevent burns, other injuries: Use your stove's back
burners and keep pot handles turned to the back of the stove.
Lock up knives, matches, cigarette lighters and plastic bags away
Do not place plastic climbing equipment indoors on hard
surfaces. Falls on cement, tile, and other hard floors, even
covered with carpet, can result in serious head injury and death.
Use these only outdoors on shock-absorbing surfaces such as mulch
or sand. Grass is not considered a shock-absorbing surface.
Fire hazards: Install smoke detectors on each floor of
your home, especially near sleeping areas; test them on a regular
basis and change the batteries each year, or when a "chirping"
sound is heard.
Electric hazards: Use safety plugs to cover electrical
outlets, and keep all loose hanging wires and appliance cords out
of reach of children. Use ground fault circuit interrupters
devices to protect outlets in basement, kitchen, bathroom,
garage, and outdoor.
Carbon monoxide poisoning: Make sure all fuel
burning appliances are properly installed, used, and maintained
annually at the start of the heating season. Do not leave
vehicles running in garages. Install at least one CO detector
that meets the requirement of the most recent UL standard.
For information on children's car seats and Auto
Safety Hotline, contact the National Highway Traffic Safety
Administration, 1-800-424-9393, 202-366-0123 (Washington, DC area
only). Its Website page is www.nhtsa.dot.gov