Electrical accidents and injuries among children can almost always be prevented and avoided. Here are some tips and guidelines to help you create a safer home environment for your children.
• Cover unused electrical outlets with outlet protectors or safety caps. Safety caps come in a variety of styles, including outlet caps that completely cover unused outlets. Install tamper-resistant electrical outlets, tamper-resistant wall plates, and adaptors.
• Replace all worn, old, or damaged appliance cords immediately. Damaged cords pose a safety hazard to children, especially babies and toddlers who have a tendency to chew and tug.
• Teach your children to keep electrical appliances away from water at all times. Use Ground Fault Circuit Interrupters (GFCIs) for extra protection in areas where there’s a risk of water coming into contact with electricity. GFCIs are found in some outlets and service panels, and monitor the flow of electric current to and from appliances. If there is an imbalance in the flow, the GFCI will quickly cut the power to prevent serious shock and injury.
• Conduct an annual home safety audit. Routinely check the condition of your electrical outlets, cords, and plugs. Inspect GFCIs, light bulbs, circuit breakers, fuses, and loose wiring. Have a qualified electrician repair or replace anything that is broken or damaged.
Learn more about electrical safety at www.hydro.mb.ca.