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Summer Safety Tips

Make Summer Fun SafeAs playground, backyard, beach, and pool season starts, the Mecklenburg County Health Department offers these suggestions to keep your child safe and healthy all summer long.

Water Safety

Water related injuries and fatalities rise during warm weather holidays for children and adults. Safety in pools and lakes is a major concern for older children, and bathtub safety is a concern for children under the age of five. Many injuries and fatalities also are due to boating accidents and inexperienced swimmers.

  • Always swim with a partner or buddy.  
  • Supervise children around pools and bodies of water.  
  • Learn CPR (cardiopulmonary resuscitation); it can be a lifesaver when seconds count. 
  • Never leave a baby alone in a bathtub or baby pool for even a second. Always keep the baby in arm's reach.  
  • Practice safe boating standards, and never drink while operating a boat.

Skateboard and Scooter Safety

  • Children should never ride skateboards or scooters in or near traffic.  
  • All skateboarders and scooter-riders should wear a helmet and other protective gear.  
  • Communities should continue to develop skateboard parks, which are more likely to be monitored for safety than ramps and jumps constructed by children at home.

Lawn Mower Safety

Try to use a mower with a control that stops the mower from moving forward if the handle is let go.  

Try to use a mower with a control that stops the mower from moving forward if the handle is let go.  
  • Children younger than 16 years should not be allowed to use ride-on mowers. Children younger than 12 years should not use walk-behind mowers.  
  • Make sure that sturdy shoes (not sandals or sneakers) are worn while mowing.  
  • Prevent injuries from flying objects, such as stones or toys, by picking up objects from the lawn before mowing begins. Have anyone who uses a mower wear hearing and eye protection. 
  • Do not pull the mower backward or mow in reverse unless absolutely necessary, and carefully look for children behind you when you mow in reverse.  
  • Always turn off the mower and wait for the blades to stop completely before removing the grass catcher, unclogging the discharge chute, or crossing gravel paths, roads, or other areas.  
  • Do not allow children to ride as passengers on ride-on mowers.  

All-Terrain Vehicle Safety

  • Off-road vehicles are particularly dangerous for children younger than 16 years who may have immature judgment and motor skills. Children who are not licensed to drive a car should not be allowed to operate off-road vehicles.  
  • Injuries frequently occur to passengers; therefore riding double should not be permitted.  
  • All riders should wear helmets, eye protection and protective reflective clothing. Appropriate helmets are those designed for motorcycle (not bicycle) use, and should include safety visors/face shields for eye protection.  
  • Parents should never permit the street use of off-road vehicles, and nighttime riding should not be allowed.  
  • Flags, reflectors and lights should be used to make vehicles more visible.  
  • Drivers of recreational vehicles should not drive after drinking alcohol. Parents should set an example for their children in this regard. 
  • Young drivers should be discouraged from on-road riding of any 2-wheeled motorized cycle, even when they are able to be licensed to do so, because they are inherently more dangerous than passenger cars.

Source: Skateboard and Scooter, Lawn Mower and All-Terrain Vehicle Safety information provided by American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP)

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