The summer holidays is a time where many family gatherings and celebrations occur. Although this is an exciting time for children, unfortunately it is also a time when injuries to children can increase. Celebrations can be a little chaotic at times, which often leads to a lack of adult supervision as there can be confusion over which adult is supervising when there are a number of adults around.
Each year in Western Australia 7,000 children are hospitalised due to an unintentional injury and sadly 27 of these children will die. In January 2017 there were approximately 1,350 children who presented to the Princess Margaret Hospital Emergency Department with an injury. During this time of year many of the activities involve water and/or the road, and there may be exposure to novelty items and/or decorations from Christmas which may not be safe for children.
Kidsafe WA recommends the following tips to help prevent child injuries during the holiday season:
- Actively supervise children during gatherings and ensure everyone knows who is responsible for the supervision of children.
- Actively supervise children within arm’s reach when in or around water. Never leave young children in the care of older children around water, it is too much responsibility.
- Check that the pool fence and gate are in good working order and never propped open.
- Remember to clean up after a holiday party and immediately empty or dispose any leftover alcohol.
- Restrict access to the BBQ unless you are there to supervise children and turn the BBQ off immediately after use.
- Be aware of button batteries in novelty items or decorations. The casing is often flimsy and the batteries aren’t secured which can be extremely dangerous if children swallow these.
Together we can help reduce the number of children sustaining injuries over the holiday period.
For more information on specific topics check out our range of fact sheets available from http://www.kidsafewa.com.au/fact-sheets-at-home.