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Keeping Children Safe

Posted Feb 10 2009 10:13am

Keeping your children safe is top priority and when you are home, it is much easier to do.  Most of you have baby proofed your home and have several devices intact to help.  But when you are traveling, keeping your child safe can be a bigger challenge.   Accidental injuries are the number one cause of death among children in the United States and sadly 90% of those injuries are avoidable.

To help parents and caregivers ensure that infants, toddlers and older children are injury-free when away from home, spokes people from Safe Kids Worldwide and Toys “R” Us/Babies “R” Us have made themselves available to discuss valuable travel safety tips.  So what can you expect to hear from these safety experts?  Below are a few of their segment ideas:

#1: Prepare for travel – Make sure you are ready for the journey as well as the destination!

Sassy Comfy Grip Spoon & Fork:

ptru1-5425494reg •Safety tip: Soft, adaptable utensils should be included in your luggage to prevent the danger associated with infants and toddlers using adult utensils.

•Product info: Feed your children using silverware designed for their little mouths and hands. For children learning to self-feed, the soft handles provide a comfortable grip.

Misc – Safety Identification Card:
•Safety tip: Before leaving home, discuss travel rules, itinerary and emergency contact information with older children. If your child is too young to remember, safely store imperative information on or in his/her belongings. In case of emergency, such as an incapacitated caregiver, this information helps first responders, i.e. police and firemen, identify your child. This information should also be on your child’s car safety seats at all times.

•Product info: Clearly write important information about your child, such as name, date of birth, medical history and who to contact in case of emergency, on a sheet of paper. Adhere this paper to the back of your child’s car safety seat where it is not visible from outside the vehicle to ensure privacy. Or, include this information in your child’s backpack.

#2: On-The-Go Safety – Whether on the road or in the air, keep children safe while in transit.

Britax Boulevard Click ‘N Safe Child Restraint Car Safety Seat:
britax-click-n-safe •Safety tip: When in transit, young children should be secured in a car safety seat that is certified for use in both motor vehicles and aircrafts. If your child rides in a car safety seat when in the car, he/she should ride in one when on a plane - the FAA strongly recommends children under 40 lbs. be seated in a child car seat on an airplane. At a minimum, babies under one year old and 20 pounds should travel in a semi-reclined rear-facing seat. Use an upright forward-facing car seat for as long as the harness permits. Make sure you know how to properly install a car safety seat - the best safety seat is the one that is right for your baby’s size and age, and is properly installed. Make sure the harness straps keep your baby properly positioned and secured in the car safety seat. Loose straps ineffectively restrain babies, putting them at a greater risk of injury. Safe Kids regularly holds car safety seat checks at Babies“R”Us – visit www.usa.safekids.org for information about events in your area.
•Product info: To prevent parents’ confusion about whether their child’s car safety seat harness is too tight or loose, the audible aid of the Click ‘N Safe harness makes knowing easy. A notable click is heard when the harness straps are snug. The seat also features True Side Impact Protection and the tangle-free five point harness has multiple heights for easy adjustments as your baby gets older.

3-Pack Snack Trap from Mossworld Enterprise:
snack-trap •Safety tip: Minimize spills and avoid potentially slippery situations by giving your children snack containers that have sealed lids. If there is a spill and your baby needs attention, pull over, stop the car, then tend to the baby.

•Product info: The Snack Trap is an infant feeding product that minimizes wasted snacks and saves clean up time while allowing the development of self-feeding skills among infants. The lid automatically closes when your child removes his/her hands to prevent spillage. *Additional Safety Tip: Place something you’ll need at your next stop, for example a purse, lunch, gym bag or briefcase, on the floor of the back seat where the child is sitting. This simple act could prevent you from forgetting your child.

#3: Sleepover Safety – When away from home, create a safe and secure location for babies to sleep.

Crib Safety:

•Safety tip: If you must use a hotel’s crib or put your baby to sleep in borrowed/garage sale-purchased crib, inspect it carefully for loose, broken or missing parts or improperly installed screws, brackets or other hardware. Look up the model on www.Recalls.gov and www.Toysrus.com/Safety to make sure it isn’t subject to any safety notices. The crib should have a firm, tight-fitting mattress (no more than two fingers of space between crib and mattress). Be sure to use tight-fitting bottom sheets that are made for crib mattresses - never use adult sheets as a substitution.

•Product tip: (If the media interview is held in-store, display crib while referencing the safety tips. If the media interview is held in-studio, don’t take a crib.)

PackNPlay from Graco - Cherry Blossom:
packnplay-from-graco-cherryblossom •Safety tip: The safest places for your baby to sleep is in a JPMA (Juvenile Product Manufacturers Association) certified crib, bassinet or portable playard. Babies should never share a bed with a sibling or parent(s), nor sleep on couches, chairs, regular beds or any other soft surfaces.

•Product info: Playards are versatile and great for home or away. They are a safe place for your baby to play or sleep, and the changing table makes changing diapers convenient. The PackNPlay contains everything you need for your baby – a soft sleeping surface, bassinet for newborns, changing station and a source of entertainment (toys included). It conveniently folds into its own compact storage bag for travel.

Summer Infant Flat Screen Video Monitor:

flat-screen-video-monitor-summer-infant •Safety tip: Keep a watchful eye on your sleeping baby with a baby monitor. Monitors have been used for decades, but advances in technology ensure that your baby is safe and secure – signals aren’t crossed with neighbor’s phones, video images are in full color and some even vibrate to allow parents to “feel” when the baby needs them. Monitors are small, portable and great for travel

•Product info: The Day & Night Handheld Color Video Monitor from Summer Infant allows you to see as well as hear your baby while moving around the house. It’s ideal for checking on your baby without waking him/her. Traditional lights and sounds alert you to your baby’s level of activity, and nighttime LED lights make your baby fully visible even in the dark of night.

#4: Out-And-About and Playtime Safety – Babies“R”Us offers a wide variety of products to make sure that your child is safe while playing and exploring a hotel room or loved one’s home.

KinderKord Child Safety Wristband Connectors:
kinderkord •Safety tip: Actively supervise your children at all times. Keep them close to you and/or know where they are. Make sure your children know in advance that they cannot leave your side without permission.

•Product info: Make it easy to keep your little ones nearby - especially when in a crowd - with the KinderKord Child Safety Wristband created by newswoman Joan Lunden. You can stay safely connected to your child without having to hold his/her hand at all times. The retractable cords allow children the freedom to explore their surroundings and provides you with peace of mind knowing your child is within arm’s reach.

Summer Infant Tall Safety Gate and Other Safety Devices:
safety-gate-from-summerinfant •Safety tip: If your travels include an extended stay at a friend or relative’s home, discuss the importance of creating a safe environment for your children with your host. Provide advice about installing safety devices (i.e. Cushiony edge/corner/fireplace guards; Door/cabinet/drawer/toilet latches and locks; Electrical outlet plugs/surge protector) in rooms like the kitchen, bathroom and nursery, as well as safety gates at the top and bottom of stairs, in entryways and around a pool.

•Product info: Corner/edge/fireplace guards prevent cuts, bumps and scrapes and can be easily installed and removed. Gates installed at the top and bottom of stairs should be securely adhered to the wall while gates in entryways can be pressure mounted. Prevent curious children from reaching poisons and other harmful items, as well as from accessing unpermitted areas by using latches and locks on doors, cabinets, drawers and toilets. Cover electrical outlets and surge protectors to prevent children from sticking metal objects into outlets.

For more safety tips, visit the Toys “R” Us, Inc. website.  There you will find safety tips designed for the season.  We hope this helps you, as parents and caregivers, to make better choices where the safety of a child is concerned.

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