Many activities bring people outside during the summer, but it is important to remember to be safe while enjoying time in the sunshine. The following guidelines can help your family to have fun outside while staying safe.
Enforce the seatbelts in your car
Seatbelts keep passengers safer than they would be if they were not strapped in. If your family is not in the regular habit of buckling up, now is the time to do so as basic safety laws are mandatory, even for road trips. It may seem obvious, but people often forget that it can be deadly to ride in a car without buckling up. Car seats can also be installed incorrectly, which is why it would be worthwhile to double-check your kid’s car seat according to the manufacturer recommendations.
Prioritize helmet safety
A helmet that fits appropriately is the best method of avoiding serious head injury that can take place after a bicycle accident. Younger kids may have trouble putting these on alone. The helmet should not tip back exposing the forehead, and it should not be wider than the head of the cyclist. “In all age groups, research has shown that an approved and appropriately-fitting helmet can lower the chance of brain injury occurring by 63-88%,” remarked personal injury lawyer Jim Parrish. Any bicycle shop should be able to fit any user with a properly sized helmet, and helmets should be approved by a helmet safety organization like the CPSC.
Don’t forget the life jackets
These life-saving devices can help adults and kids stay afloat if they become injured or unconscious. Drowning can be non-fatal and can result in permanent brain injury. Disabilities can be lasting effects of drowning, and the ability to function in a basic manner can be lost. In 2015, a documented 85% of those who drowned did not have a life jacket on, according to the U.S. Coast Guard. Life jackets come in a variety of activities and styles, which makes it easy to have designs that your kids will approve of always on hand.
Never leave children alone by the water
Roughly 3,000 kids younger than age 5 receive emergency medical care annually for injuries that occurred by being submerged. Numerous children who were injured were permanently disabled with conditions such as brain damage. Since kids are naturally curious, be sure to enroll your kids in swimming lessons, ensure that you can perform basic CPR rescue and first aid, and try to barricade children away from pools, if possible.
Be wary of playground equipment
Injuries that occurred at a playground are surprisingly common. Annually, over 200,000 kids under the age of 14 are taken to receive emergency medical care for injuries suffered on the playground. All equipment on the playground must be maintained adequately and should be appropriate for the children’s ages. Broken or loose screws could cause injury, which is why it can be beneficial to inspect a playground prior to allowing children to play. Always watch kids while they are playing. Younger children may become injured if they play near bigger kids, which is why parks typically have a separate structure for toddlers.
Have a safer involvement with sports
Traumatic brain injuries can occur as a result of recreational play or sporting events. To start, be sure that appropriate safety equipment is being utilized for the sport. Protective gear like elbow and kneepads can provide safety for the kids and peace of mind for the parents. Gear that has been used for many years in a row should probably be replaced, as newer materials can provide better protection.
Party responsibly to keep your family safe
Summer is often a time for many celebrations, but in the United States, roughly 36 individuals are killed and over 700 are seriously hurt by car accidents caused by an intoxicated driver. Keep adult children safe by reminding them of the one hour per drink guideline, or have a designated driver assigned prior to the party. No one should drive after they have been drinking. Be an example for your kids by demonstrating that they should call a friend, family member, or an Uber for a ride after drinking.