Whether you have a young child who spends time at home with a babysitter, or a teen who comes home after school to an empty house, your home should be as accident- and injury-proof as possible. These precautionary measures will help ensure your children's safety when you're not home:
Children of all ages -
• Install smoke and carbon monoxide detectors strategically; check their batteries regularly.
• Invest in a fire extinguisher; instruct your caregiver or older child in its use.
• Make sure your child or caregiver has emergency phone numbers and knows what to do if an emergency arises.
Young children -
• Make sure your caregiver understands the level of supervision your child requires and is CPR-certified.
• Childproof your cabinets, electrical outlets, stairways and toilets.
• Never leave poisons within reach. Safe Kids Canada reminds that poisons include medications, cleaning products, gardening/pest control products, car supplies, health and beauty products, art supplies and other toxic substances.
• Examine your home for potential choking or strangulation risks - toys with small parts, dangling drapery cords, etc.
Older children -
• Make sure your child understands the parameters for acceptable behaviour while you're gone. Include rules to ensure safety in and around your pool, on the balcony or deck, and in your yard.
• Set and enforce a strict policy about visitors, and make sure your child knows what to do in case a stranger comes to the door or into the yard.
• Keep matches, lighters, gasoline and other flammable materials locked away.
"Keeping our children safe is the most important responsibility parents face," says Jeff Burke, president & CEO at Western Financial Group, an organization providing services to protect families. "Strategic planning coupled with ongoing communication ensures their well-being."
Courtesy of Newscanada