Although this holiday season will likely look different, we want to remind you of your risk of injury at home.
Burn and Scald Safety
- Kids have thinner skin, so burns and scalds in babies and toddlers can be more severe than in adults.
- If you’re having some hot chocolate or tea, make sure cords from electric kettles and hot mugs of liquid are not in a place where young kids can knock them over.
- Candles can be nice, but remember not to place them near flammable objects such as wrapping paper or within the reach of children.
- Fireplaces should have a gate or fence around it to keep kids away. Even glass on electric fireplaces can get hot!
- A beautiful real tree smells nice, but it can dry out and cause a fire hazard, especially when placed near a cozy fireplace. Don’t forget to water it often.
- Resource: Injury Insight: Burns in Young Children (PDF)
Decorating and Ladder Safety
- When decorating a tree—frayed, cracked, or broken light strings or extension cords can cause a fire hazard.
- Remember not to string LED and conventional light strings together, and don’t exceed 6 light strings to a single electrical outlet.
- The tree should be secured firmly in the tree stand so it is not at risk of getting knocked over by your kids or pets.
- Falls are a leading cause of injury and hospitalization in adults. Falls from ladders can lead to fractures or concussion—not a great way to start the holiday season!
- Remember to use a safe and sturdy ladder to hang lights inside or outside the house.
- Rest the ladder against a solid surface, or have a spotter at the bottom to hold the ladder for you.
- Do not stand on the very top rung or platform of the ladder.
- Instead of leaning over to hang that last light, climb down and move the ladder over. It might take a bit longer, but is safer.
- Resource: Ladder Safety: Preventable and BC Hydro (PDF)
Choking Prevention and Toys
- Inspect gifts to make sure they are age-appropriate.
- Toys for young children should not have small pieces or parts that can be a choking hazard.
- Stickers on packaging, ribbons and cords, or little batteries are dangerous. They can get stuck in the airway or esophagus.
- A small child can choke on any object that can fit through a toilet paper tube.
- Resource: Be Smart, Don’t Choke
- Resource: Choking Prevention in Small Children: HealthLinkBC
During COVID-19, many have been participating in physical activity outdoors rather than indoors, such as snowshoeing, skiing, and ice skating. Active & Safe Central has some tips on how to stay safe while enjoying the outdoors.