Everyone needs a safety belt or a safety seat!
- The back seat is generally the safest place for a child to ride
- Babies up to 20 pounds should ride facing rear
- The safety belt must stay tight around the safety seat
- The safety seat harness must be buckled snugly on the child
- Children up to forty pounds benefit from being in a safety seat
- Booster seats are designed for children 60-80 pounds
For more information on car safety, click here.
Fire is FAST!
In less than 30 seconds a small flame can get completely out of control and turn into a major fire. It only takes minutes for thick black smoke to fill a house. In minutes, a house can be engulfed in flames. There is only time to escape.
Fire is HOT!
Heat is more threatening than flames. A fire’s heat alone can kill. Inhaling super hot air will scorch your lungs. The heat can melt clothes to your skin.
Fire is DARK!
Fire starts bright, but quickly produces black smoke and complete darkness.
Fire is DEADLY!
Smoke and toxic gases kill more people than flames do. Fire uses up the oxygen you need and produces smoke and poisonous gases that kill.
You and your family can help make your home safer from fire. Here’s how:
- Turn pot handles toward the center of the stove. They should never hang over the edge where someone could bump into them and knock them off the stove.
- Never put anything over a lamp, like clothes or a blanket, not even when playing.
- Don’t let children touch radiators or heaters.
- Don’t let children stand too close to the fireplace or a wood stove. They could get burned or their clothes could catch fire.
- Don’t leave matches, lighters, or candles where children can reach them.
- Don’t let children play with electrical cords.
- Never let children stick anything into an electrical socket.
- Turn off lights, stereos, TVs and other electrical equipment when you are finished using them.
- Ask your family about their home fire escape plan. Ask where to meet outside if there is a fire.
- Make sure you know two ways to escape from every room.
In the event of a fire:
- Escape first, then call for help
- Never stand up in a fire; always crawl low under the smoke and try to keep your mouth covered.
- Never return to a burning building for any reason.
This information comes from The United States Fire Administration (USFA), a division of the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). To learn more about fire safety, visit https://www.usfa.fema.gov/.
- Look all ways before crossing at crosswalks. Keep to the right in the crosswalk.
- Avoid crossing between parked cars.
- Where there is no sidewalk and it is necessary to walk in the roadway, walk on left side, facing traffic.
- Wear or carry retro-reflective material at night to help drivers see you.
- Discuss traffic lights – green means go, yellow means wait, red means stop. Cross only at the right time.
- Never chase a ball into the street.
- Streets are for cars – children should play in the yard or a playground, not in the street.
- Learn street signs and what they mean (STOP, crosswalk, etc.).
- Never play behind parked cars in the driveway.
- Watch carefully whenever walking behind parked cars.
- The basic rule of playground safety: watch the children at all times, particularly near swings.
- Some playgrounds are on school grounds and should be avoided if the school children are outside playing.
- Whenever you go out in warm weather, remember to bring along drinks.
- It is important to apply sunscreen, even if it is hazy.
- Safety around water is particularly important. A child can drown in just a few inches of water. Whenever you are near water you must never leave a child alone – if the phone rings, take them with you or let it ring! Always stay within arm’s reach when the children are in water.
As the weather warms, it is likely that you will be spending more time outside. Outdoor play is important for children – to move their large muscles, enjoy the fresh air and explore nature. It is important to use sunscreen to protect from the sun’s harmful rays, and it is also important to be aware of possible disease-bearing insects.
Mosquitoes and ticks are a problem that can’t be ignored. Not only are they unpleasant, but they have been found to carry potentially fatal illnesses, including Rocky Mountain spotted fever, West Nile virus, malaria, Lyme disease, dengue fever and equine encephalitis, all of which have been reported in the United States. Prevention of bites is very important both through physical barriers to contact (clothing) and through the use of chemical repellents.
There is a need for using caution when applying insect repellents containing DEET to the skin of young children. Look for products that have about 30% DEET. Products with lower concentrations (10% to 15%) can be used for children if families are concerned about the potential risks of DEET.
The EPA and others have made the following recommendations regarding the use of DEET in children:
- Do not apply to infants under 2 months of age
- Read and follow all directions and precautions on the product label.
- Do not apply over cuts, wounds or irritated skin.
- Do not apply to young children’s hands or near eyes or mouth.
- Do not allow young children to apply products themselves.
- Use just enough to cover the exposed skin and/or clothing.
- Do not use under clothing.
- Avoid over application.
- After returning indoors, wash treated skin with soap and water.
- Wash treated clothing before wearing again.
- Do not use spray solutions in enclosed areas or near food.
- For use on face, apply to adult hands and then rub on face. Do not spray face. Avoid areas around eyes and mouth.
There is no evidence that non-DEET repellents are as effective as those containing DEET. In fact, some alternatives may be more toxic. Yet using DEET repellents on the skin isn’t the only way to avoid mosquito and tick bites.
Since mosquitoes can bite through very thin fabric, applying DEET-containing substances to clothing offers added protection with less potential for exposure.
Finally, long sleeves with cuffs and long pants with tight cuffs or tucked into socks or shoes are excellent barriers to ticks.
This information is adapted from the website of the American Academy of Pediatrics. See full information at https://www.aap.org/.
Here are some additional tips from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (visit their website at https://www.cdc.gov).
Avoid tick habitats: Whenever possible, avoid entering areas that are likely to be infested with ticks, particularly in spring and summer when nymphal ticks feed. Ticks favor a moist, shaded environment, especially areas with leaf litter and low-lying vegetation in wooded, brushy or overgrown grassy habitat.
Perform a tick check and remove attached ticks: The transmission of B. burgdorferi (the bacteria that causes Lyme disease) from an infected tick is unlikely to occur before 36 hours of tick attachment. For this reason, daily checks for ticks and promptly removing any attached tick that you find will help prevent infection. Embedded ticks should be removed using fine-tipped tweezers. DO NOT use petroleum jelly, a hot match, nail polish, or other products. Grasp the tick firmly and as closely to the skin as possible. With a steady motion, pull the tick’s body away from the skin. The tick’s mouthparts may remain in the skin, but do not be alarmed. The bacteria that cause Lyme disease are contained in the tick’s midgut or salivary glands. Cleanse the area with an antiseptic.
For a safe and festive holiday, check out these tips for safe celebrations for all ages:
- Use makeup instead of masks.
- Carry a flashlight after dark.
- Put reflective tape on the children’s costumes.
- Inspect all candy before eating to be sure it is fully wrapped
- Use face paint or makeup. Look for nontoxic and hypoallergenic makeup instead of masks, especially for very young children. Masks can make it hard for youngsters to see and breathe.
- Wigs and beards shouldn’t cover the eyes or mouth. Be sure headgear won’t slide over the child’s face.
- Add reflective tape to costumes. Choose light colors. Be sure the costume is not too heavy for the child. Accessories such as wands should be soft and flexible.
- Costumes should be short enough so the child won’t trip. Sleeves should fit properly as well. Avoid footwear that makes it hard to walk.
- Use flame-resistant fabric for homemade costumes.
Adolescents and teens:
- Travel in groups. Go only to the houses of people you know. Younger children should be accompanied by a responsible older person.
- Carry flashlights.
- Carry a mobile phone for quick communication.
- Stay focused on your surroundings. If harassed or threatened, go into the nearest store or restaurant and ask to use the phone. Call parents and/or police. Let the proprietors know that your group feels unsafe.
- Be very cautious around jack-o’-lanterns with lit candles. Keep an eye out for flames and/or candles on porches.
- Consider alternatives to trick-or-treating. Alternatives include house or school parties or volunteering at a haunted-house project.
Teen and adult drivers:
- Clear the driver’s view. Be sure that neither the driver’s costume nor anything else in the car obstructs the driver’s visibility.
- Wear a seat belt. Be sure your passengers are wearing a safety belt, even if they have to take off part of their costume to attach it.
- Drive slowly and defensively. Don’t assume that a pedestrian, especially an excited youngster in a costume, will move as you expect. Keep an eye out for trick-or-treaters darting out from parked cars.
- Replace burned-out bulbs in exterior lights. Leave your exterior lights on later than usual-perhaps even all night.
- Clear the pathway. Make sure the path to your door is well lighted and your lawn is clear of things that could be tripped over, such as jack-o’-lanterns with lit candles, ladders, garden hoses, flowerpots, bikes, and animal leashes.
- Sweep wet leaves from sidewalks and stairs.
- Keep excitable pets away from the door. You’ll have a safer and calmer house if you keep Fido away from where you are dispensing the treats.
- Put your car in the garage. Lock your garage doors.
Instead of candy, offer these treats:
- Halloween stickers
- Halloween pencils
- Halloween erasers
- Sugar-free gum
- Plastic spider rings
- Small toys
- Temporary tattoos
- Miniature boxes of raisins
- Coins-how about a new state quarter?
- Individual packages of cheese or peanut-butter crackers or pretzels
- Boxes of fruit juice
- Gel pens
- Fast-food coupons
- Key chains
- Hackey sacks or squeeze-foam balls
Hunting season occurs at different times of the year depending on the animal being hunted and the state you live in. You can check on the internet for hunting season dates in your state. Generally, most hunting takes place September through February, but some birds are hunted in the spring as well.
If you like to walk in the woods, with or without the children, or go hiking, be sure to check on local hunting season dates.
During hunting season it’s important to be visible in the woods. There’s no better way to be visible than by wearing bright orange – the color worn by almost all hunters.
It is important to be careful, but it is still safe to be in the woods if you think about where you’re going and you prepare properly for your trip. The best form of preparation is in the clothing you wear and the places you choose to go.
It is best to avoid wearing white during hunting season. A flash of white may be mistaken for the white of a deer’s tail. Items of blaze-orange clothing that are visible from all directions are best to wear. For instance, an orange cap or an orange jacket encircle the wearer in color. Inexpensive orange vinyl vests are easy to come by in outdoors shops or department stores. They are available for dogs too, who also need to be safe in the woods.
Hunters generally know where hiking trails are located, so it’s not a bad idea to stick to established trails and limit off-trail trampings during hunting season.
Keeping in mind that there are many areas where the hiking is great and the hunting isn’t, seek out areas where the habitat isn’t attractive to game, but where views are well worth the trip. Consider hiking away from areas that are popular with hunters.
If you’re wondering where those areas are, you might ask at your local sporting goods shop, or check with the state Fish & Game Department. Don’t miss the fun of a fall or spring hike, when the air is crisp, there are few bugs, the crowds are scarce, and – with few leaves – the views are terrific. A little extra planning and preparation will help ensure a safe and enjoyable outing.