In our final week of advice relating to Summer Safety, we offer some more general advice which should ensure playtime in your garden is also safe as well as fun!
Clear the area
Inside your home we encourage you to try and see things through your child’s eyes. The messages about turning saucepan handles away from the front edge of the hob, or leaving knives on the side of your kitchen worktop, are widely known and understood. But a similar view should be taken to your garden as well.
Make sure your shed or garage is locked, especially if inside you have a number of sharp or blunt objects like hammers, drill bits, chisels, and Stanley knives – for example. Also, once it is locked, make sure the key isn’t stored somewhere your child can locate it.
If you are gardening, make sure all tools are kept out of the reach of your children. Also, if you have a lawnmower, use it and put it away – immediately after use. A child could accidentally turn it on and injure themselves very quickly.
Not only would your child falling in animal waste be unpleasant for them, and you having to clean it off of them, but it can also lead to your child getting sick – or even blindness. Dog waste often contains roundworm larvae – which can cause blindness in people – but especially children. Youngsters are most at risk as they are more likely to put things in their mouth and less likely to wash their hands. Around 50 children a year in the UK suffer blindness as a result of toxocariasis (which is the illness related to the human infection of parasitic roundworms).
Ensure your garden is cleared of all animal waste regularly before your child plays outside. Also make sure litter trays are out of reach of children and any sand pits you may have, for your child to use, are covered overnight to avoid animals burying their waste in the sand.
Just like the advice states above here, take time to see your garden from your child’s eyes. Consider how you can make steps safe in your garden and block-off any raised elements where your child could fall from height.
Also, if you are using weed killers, slug pellets or other poisons, care will need to be taken when using these – and then allowing your child to play in the same area. This is as all of these can harm children if ingested or touched.