Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Top 5 List! Hidden Home Hazards.

   This is the Top 5 Hidden Home Hazards according to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC)

Each year approximately 33 million people are injured by consumer products that are in the home. Some of these products are from what the agency has been giving warnings about for years; others are new technologies and products.

"The home is where people feel comfortable and secure, but constant awareness is the key to keeping families safe," said Acting Chairman Nancy Nord. "CPSC is aiming to increase awareness of the hidden hazards around the home in order to help consumers protect against these dangers."

By educating ourselves in the dangers that are in our home many lives can be spared and life-altering injuries avoided.

  1. Magnets - Since 2005: 1 Death, 86 injuries and 8 million magnetic toys were recalled. Magnets have become more and more popular from hanging items on your fridge to your kids toys like building sets and jewelry. As the number of magnets used in children's toys goes up so does the injury caused by these magnets. These magnets can fall out of the child's toys making it a very small piece and be swallowed. If two or more magnets or a magnet and a piece of metal get swallowed separately by the child they can connect to each other through intestinal walls and get trapped in place. This type of injury is hard to diagnose. Though parents and doctors could assume that these will just pass through the child without consequence these magnets could attract in the body twisting and pinching the intestines, causing holes, blockages etc. if not treated properly and promptly. 
  2. Recalled Products - Every year there are about 400 recalled items. CPSC is very effective at getting bad products off of the store shelves like recalled toys, appliances and electronics etc. But if you have the product in your home you will have to be the one on the lookout. Consumers need to be aware of the latest safety recalls to keep the dangerous products away from their families. (I have added the CPSC feed to the right of this page. It has the latest child-related recalls on it)
  3. Tip-Overs - Average 22 deaths per year, 31 in 2006 and an estimated 3,000 injuries. Furniture, TV's and Ranges can tip over crushing your child. Most of the appliances anymore come with a mounting feature to mount them to a wall stud preventing them from falling over on your child. TV's placed on furniture like dressers or high stands can cause head trauma to a child even though today's TV's don't weigh a lot like the old days. 
  4. Windows and Coverings - Estimated 12 deaths a year from window cords and 9 deaths 3,700 injuries from  window falls. If you have blinds or window coverings that use cords; these cords can wrap around your child's neck strangling them. Parents are better off using cordless blinds or keep the cords/chains permanently up and out of reach of any child. If the cord has a loop in the end of it you should cut that loop out and install a safety tassel at the end of each pull cord. NEVER place a child's crib or playpen within reach of a window blind. Kids love to play around windows, look out them etc. Unfortunately children can be injured or die if they fall out of one. Don't rely on the window screen as they are there to keep the bugs out, not to keep the kids in.
  5. Pool and Spa Drains - The suction of a pool drain can be strong enough to pull an adult under water but most incidents involve children. The child's body can become sealed against the drain or their hair can be pulled into it making it virtually impossible for them to get out of the situation. Pool and spa owners should  install a Safety Vacuum Release System (SVRS), which will shut off the pool pump if it becomes blocked. 
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