Safe Celebrating for the 4th
As you gather to celebrate tomorrow’s holiday, please stay safe! The CPSC shared sobering statistics:
According to analysis of media reports by USA Swimming, the national governing body for the sport of swimming, in 2011, there were 25 drowning incidents involving children younger than 15 reported over the week of the July 4 holiday (June 30 through July 6). In 2010, 24 drowning incidents were reported during that same week. CPSC reports that annually there are about 390 pool or spa-related drownings for children younger than 15. Another 5,200 children of that age go to hospital emergency rooms for near-drowning injuries. An unknown number of children are seriously brain-damaged.
In addition, there is the risk from fireworks, a popular July 4th pastime. Burn injuries and injuries to the eyes are especially common and damaging, with children between the ages of 5-14 at highest risk – “more than twice the risk of the general population”.
What can you do to keep your children safe?
Leave fireworks to the professionals. They are lovely to watch, but dangerous to use. If adults are using them nearby, move your children away. Even sparklers are not safe – they “typically burn at 1,200 degrees Fahrenheit and cause 27 percent of all fireworks injuries, including third-degree burns”.
Supervise children at all times. If you’ll be drinking or socializing with friends, make sure that someone is assigned to be responsible for the children’s safety. Injuries can happen in mere moments.
Provide safe fun to keep kids busy. Watching professional fireworks from a safe distance and supervised water activities can be great fun, but there are plenty of other activities to share with kids over the holiday. Backyard games, bubbles, coloring pictures for deployed servicemen and women, and simply spending time together are also great ways to celebrate the holiday.
Wishing all our families a happy – and safe – 4th of July!