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Published June 2014.
There is no escaping the fact that accidents are a leading cause of child death in the UK. This is why the Child Accident Prevention Trust launched their annual Child Safety Week campaign. Focusing on raising awareness of the risks of child accidents and how they can be prevented, the Trust provides a variety of resources to both educate adults and help them run exciting activities that promote safety messages in a fun way.
This year Child Safety Week will be running from 23rd – 29th June, and will focus on accidents that are more likely to occur during the morning rush. These include accidents that can happen right in your very own home…
Every year in the UK over one million children under the age of fifteen are taken to A&E following accidents in and around the home, with half of these children aged under five years old and the majority of accidents being highly preventable. These include falls (which make up 39% of children’s’ accidents), burns or scalds (which see 50,000 children under the age of fourteen pass through A&E), and poisoning (which sees 30,000 children taken to A&E). These poisonings are usually the result of the consumption of domestic cleaning products – items we don’t usually see as anything more than everyday household essentials.
This is just why Child Safety Week is so important. While the media is full of stories about very serious child safety issues such as road traffic accidents and abduction, safety in the home is something that is relatively overlooked and assumed to be common knowledge. However, it is the little things we take for granted around the home that could potentially lead to a tragic accident.
Take the kitchen, for example, where the most serious household accidents take place. 67,000 children experience an accident in the kitchen every year; accidents stemming from everything from unattended irons to easily accessible cleaning or medical products. The outcome of an accident triggered by one of these things can be heart-breaking, but the good news is that the accidents themselves are actually very preventable.
As delicate and vulnerable as they are curious and adventurous, children have household accidents like these simply because they don’t really know what they are doing. In their eyes they are bold explorers learning more about the world around them, so all you need to do is restrict access to the potentially harmful elements of this brave new world. Whether that involves fitting a baby gate on the stairs or a lock on the medicine cabinet, there are plenty of easy ways to keep your children safe without sapping the fun from your home.
If you would like to get involved with Child Safety Week yourself and further your knowledge about hazards in the home, why not test your own safety knowledge using this interactive kitchen hazard awareness test from Betta Living?
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