Keep your kids safe

Most people consider electricity a necessity, though few give much thought to its dangers. Parents should discuss the potential dangers of electricity with their children, and heed these dangers themselves. Electricity easily goes through conductors such as metal, water and things with water in them -- like people and animals. It does not easily go through non-conductors such as rubber, plastic, glass and wax. These materials are put around electric wires to keep electricity away from us. You should not handle frayed electrical cords that are plugged into outlets. They can shock, burn and even kill.

  • Playtime safety - Children and adults alike enjoy flying kites or model planes with control lines. Never use wire, tinsel or any other metal in the kite or string. Also be sure the string or cord you are using is dry. Never fly a kite or model plane near power lines, and don't fly them during rainy weather. Children are tree climbers. Warn them not to climb any tree that has a power line running close to it. They also should be warned to stay away from anything that says "High Voltage." Lightning is electricity in the air. Children should be taught to play safely during a storm. Because lightning can jump from cloud to cloud or from cloud to the ground, children and adults should stay away from trees and poles and stay out of water during a storm.
  • Out of bounds - Children should learn to stay away from electrical equipment such as ground-mounted transformers that serve apartments, homes, shopping centers and other large complexes. If you are around the beach or a lake, be alert for electric lines near a dock or pier. Also remember to watch out for dangers around the house. Be especially careful around electric appliances, plug outlets, wires, switches and cords. Don't touch anything electrical if you're wet. If you see someone else shocked or burned by electricity, don't touch the person or the electrical connection. Immediately call the rescue squad and/or the law enforcement agency with details of the accident. Children should be warned to keep away from downed lines and to keep everyone else away until HWE and law enforcement agency are notified. Respect the power of electricity. Work and play in safe areas away from electrical hazards.
  • Oh, baby! Keep little ones safe from electric shock
    Ask any parent: electrical outlets, cords and light bulb sockets hold some kind of fascination for small children. They seem to think that those tiny little slots in an outlet were designed for them to put their fingers in. And a wayward cord is just asking to be pulled. Babyproofing your home should start with looking for electrical hazards -- protecting your little ones from shocks is actually very simple. For the minimal cost of outlet covers, you can keep those tiny fingers out of the outlets. Some types totally block unused outlets; others allow you to use the outlet but make it impossible for a child to insert fingers, pencils, pennies or anything else. Babies -- and pets, too -- are also attracted to power cords. They like to chew on them, play with them, pull on them and even get tangled in them. By using a cord shortener to secure loose lengths, stapling (carefully to avoid punctures) or taping down cords, or securing cords behind heavy furniture, you can avoid the risk of your child pulling a lamp down or choking on the cord. Some items like fans, irons, space heaters and the like, should be unplugged and put away when they are not in use. In the kitchen, make certain that the cords of small appliances, such as toasters, toaster ovens and coffee makers, aren't in reach of your child. A few easy, inexpensive steps like these will help you ensure your baby's safety.