5 Ways to Teach Kids About Electrical Safety

Recently, I discussed the importance of keeping your family safe in the winter when fires are more likely to occur. One of the main causes of home fires is faulty electrical wires and equipment. Electrical safety is something to keep in mind.

If you have children electricity poses an even greater threat. When my oldest son was born I had no idea that thousands of kids suffer electricity-related injuries on a yearly basis, or that some of those children die as a result of electrocution.

It can be hard for young kids to grasp how dangerous electricity is because it’s something they can’t really see or touch. Their small bodies also can’t handle electric shock like an adult, which makes electricity that much more dangerous. It’s up to us parents to take steps to avoid accidents and make sure our kids are fully aware of electric dangers. Here are five ways to do just that!

Hire Professionals for Electrical Jobs

DIY projects are an effective way to save money while increasing your home improvement skills. I’m all about being crafty and earning sweat equity. But safety should always take priority over saving a few bucks. Any time electrical work is involved it’s time to call the professionals.

Reputable electricians make electrical safety their top priority. They’ll make sure wiring is up to code and fix issues that pose a threat. Some companies can even provide electrical safety services and conduct an inspection of your home to identify hazards that pose a risk for children and adults.

Take a Tour to Point Out Electrical Hazards

Research studies that analyze medical examiner files in multiple locations have found that electrocution deaths are rare, but they often occur when children are playing around electrical wires and equipment. The majority of incidents (69%) occur at home and injury is usually a result of the child not realizing the danger.

It’s helpful for kids to see what you’re talking about when you discuss electricity safety. Walk through your home and point out electrical dangers and areas that are off-limits for kids. It also helps to take a trip around the neighborhood pointing out things such as power lines and why they are dangerous to be around. Make sure that your children understand they can still be hurt if they are touching something else that’s touching the wires or equipment.

Learn With Your Kids Online

Another way to educate kids about electricity is through interactive online programs. The Electrical Safety Foundation International (ESFI) has created a series of online guides that help kids learn about different electrical safety topics. SwitchedonKids.org also has fun tools that break down electricity safety room-by-room.

Be a Good Role Model

Kids often learn by observing the adults around them. If you practice safe electricity habits your children are more likely to do so as well. Everyone in the household should make it a habit to:

  • Unplug and discontinue use of electrics with damaged cords.
  • Keeping electric cords tucked out of the way where they aren’t under rugs or carpeting.
  • Don’t yank on electronics by their cords.
  • Never touch or tamper with power lines.
  • Keep all electronics far away from water.
  • Practice turning electronics off when they aren’t in use.
  • Always put electronics that aren’t being used out of the way where young children can’t reach them.

Cover Power Outlets

Babies and toddlers seem to have a natural urge to stick objects in holes. Every year more than 2,400 kids are treated for at the ER for electrical injuries caused by outlets. It’s an injury that’s 100% preventable.

Outlet caps and covers are a quick, cheap solution that can help prevent electric shocks. However, if you’re planning on replacing the outlets or don’t mind a little extra work, it’s best to use tamper-resistant receptacles (TRRs). These outlets have shutters covering the holes. The shutters must be pushed in simultaneously to open, which prevents kids from sticking things into sockets.

These are just five ways you can improve the safety of your home and protect your children from a serious, unseen danger. Making your kids aware of the dangers posed by electricity is often enough to prevent a serious, life-threatening injury.

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Comments

  1. vickie couturier says:

    very interesting,,with some good points

  2. Kristin C says:

    Thanks for these great tips – electrical safety is so important. All the outlets in our house are covered.