Scales of Justice

September is Baby Safety Month

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This is an annual reminder to check your homes for recalled baby products, follow suggested safety rules and check all your first aid and prevention measures.

A few of the most recent recalls for baby and children are:

  1. Inclined sleepers – known as the Fisher Price Rock and Play and the Kids II Rocking Sleeper. If you have these sleepers, stop using them and contact your retailer regarding a refund.
  2. Contigo water bottles – the Contigo brand has recalled 5.7 million kids water bottles for a choking hazard. Specifically, the water bottles with the black base attaching the silicone top to the bottle. These are pulling apart and becoming a choking hazard.
  3. Cannondale Cyclocross Bicycles Recalled – These bikes have been recalled due to death and serious injury risks; one fatality was reported. The fork can break, posing a fall hazard with the risk of death and serious injury. Immediately stop using the bicycle and take it to the nearest authorized Cannondale dealer for a free repair. Cannondale dealers will replace, free of cost, the bicycle’s fork with a full carbon fiber replacement fork.

Check all recalled products at: www.CPSC.gov or download the Consumer Product Safety Commission recall app. The first step in protecting your baby and children is knowing what to protect them from.

Beyond recalled items, you can check your childproofing checklist to ensure you have all the suggestions covered in your house. Here are a few common childproofing steps to take in your house.

  • Check the crib. Make sure that your crib meets today’s safety standards (see the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission’s website, cpsc.gov, for tips). Pull cords away from the crib, and keep the crib away from windows, if possible.
  • Install window guards: These are metal or aluminum devices that are installed in the lower half of vertically opening windows. They are designed and tested to prevent children from falling from a window.
  • Install safety latches and locks: Put safety guards on toilets to make sure that children can’t get in them, and on any cabinet or drawer that contains medicine or any other hazardous items.
  • Have a plumber install an anti-scald device for the faucets and showerhead: Regulate the water temperature to help prevent burns.
  • Lock stove knobs: Keep kids from igniting stove burners by using protective appliance knob covers.
  •  Install a safety cover on the garbage disposal: A cover will safeguard little hands.
  •  Attach safety latches and locks: Secure any drawers containing knives, scissors, and sharp utensils, and keep kids out of any cabinets that contain household cleaners.
  • Place covers over unused outlet: Sliding covers are the best, as the push-in ones can be pulled out and possibly choked on.
  •  Put up safety gates: Install hardware-mounted safety gates in front of any stairs in the house.
  •  Install corner and edge bumpers: These will help prevent injuries from falls against sharp edges.
  •  Use doorstops and door holders: Keep small fingers from being crushed or pinched in doors and door hinges.
  •  Switch to cordless phones, if you haven’t already: Children can get tangled in phone cord. Plus, keeping an eye on your young ones is easier, since you can move around the house (or even outside) freely.
  • Make a kid-free zone: Banish little ones from the grilling area, as well as any structure or shed that might contain tools, lawn mowers, etc.
  •  Childproof the pool: Install a five-foot-high fence around its perimeter. Make sure that the gate to the pool has a lock that prevents children from entering alone but can be opened quickly by an adult in case of an emergency. And don’t let water accumulate on the top of the pool cover—that’s a drowning hazard.

Another reminder this September is to check your first-aid kit and restock if necessary. Each kit should include:

  • an up-to-date first-aid manual
  • a list of emergency phone numbers
  • sterile gauze pads of different sizes
  • adhesive tape
  • adhesive bandages (Band-Aids) in several sizes
  • elastic bandage
  • a splint
  • antiseptic wipes
  • soap
  • antibiotic ointment
  • antiseptic solution (like hydrogen peroxide)
  • hydrocortisone cream (1%)
  • acetaminophen and ibuprofen
  • extra prescription medicines (if the family is going on vacation)
  • tweezers
  • sharp scissors
  • safety pins
  • disposable instant cold packs
  • calamine lotion
  • alcohol wipes or ethyl alcohol
  • thermometer
  • tooth preservation kit
  • plastic non-latex gloves (at least 2 pairs)
  • flashlight and extra batteries
  • a blanket
  • mouthpiece for giving CPR (you can get one from your local Red Cross)

This is also a great time to check your batteries in your smoke and carbon dioxide detectors, review family safety plans, review your fire extinguishers dates, and any other annual/semi-annual checks to your specific home. A safe home is imperative for baby safety. Please take this month to review the above and make your and your family’s safety as a number one priority.

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