Water Safety Tips

Swimming can be fun and much less dangerous if you follow some basic safety rules.

(NAPSI)-If you’re planning on some fun in the sun this season, you may want to refresh your knowledge of water safety before taking that big plunge.

“Drowning is the second leading cause of unintentional injury-related death among children ages 1 to 14,” noted Bernard J. Fisher, director of Health and Safety for the American Lifeguard Association (ALA). “Most drownings and near-drownings occur in residential swimming pools and in open water sites.”

To help parents and kids keep water safety at the top of their minds, the ALA offers the following tips for safe water fun:

  • Always swim near a lifeguard when possible.
  • Make sure children wear approved safety life vests.
  • Never dive into shallow water.
  • Always obey posted warnings, guidelines and rules.
  • Always exit the water quickly at the first sign of thunder or lightning.
  • Avoid swimming at night or without proper lighting.
  • Avoid running, pushing or any horseplay around slippery surfaces or near the water’s edge.

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Tips For A Family-Safe Garage

The garage doesn’t have to be the most dangerous room in the house. To protect your family, keep your garage organized, secured and clean.

by Marc Shuman

(NAPSI)-Preventable home injuries result in nearly 21 million medical visits each year. Of those, thousands are due to dangerous garages. If you’re one of the 65 million Americans who have a garage, these tips will help open the door to a safe garage.

Monitor These Zones For A Family-Safe Garage

Floor-It’s so easy just to dump stuff on the floor of your garage. But that can mean dangerous piles of materials and objects that children can climb or you can trip over. Keep stairs, steps, landings and all floors clear of clutter. It’s just safer.
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Seven Tips For Swimming Safely

Red Cross spokesperson Connie Harvey shows kids the summer water safety basics.

(NAPSI)-Before heading off to the pool or the beach, be sure your experience will be a safe one.

Here are some safety tips from the American Red Cross:

  1. Children and adults need to learn how to swim and swim well. Nobody should ever swim alone.
  2. There should always be adult supervision whenever anybody is in the water. For young children, you need to maintain reach supervision-meaning an adult should always be within arms’ reach to be able to respond to any situation.
  3. When choosing safety equipment, make a family day out of it. Go to your local pool store and find a U.S. Coast Guard-approved life jacket. Everyone should wear one when they go boating. Look for the Coast Guard stamp and be sure it’s the correct size for the person wearing it, which is designated by weight. Used properly, these plastic vests can help save lives.
  4. Establish safety rules for your home pool. A medical emergency can strike at any time. Safety rules should be posted. Put the rules on a plastic or plastic-coated sign so that they can stand up to the wet environment.
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Safe Ways To Play: Tips For Safe Cold Weather Fun

Two Is Better Than One-It’s a safe idea to use the buddy system when skiing.

(NAPSI)-If you’re one of 12 million Americans who plan to take advantage of the cold weather and spend time outdoors sledding, skiing or snowboarding, there are some important safety tips that you should be aware of before you head outside.

In one year alone, there were more than 362,000 sledding-, skiing- and snowboarding-related injuries, according to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission. To help prevent injuries and keep children and families safe while engaging in outdoor activities, Dr. John Tongue, Fellow of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons, has teamed up with the Jeep® Safe Way to Play campaign to offer these important safety tips:

  • Ride in style: The safest way to ride a sled is to sit in a forward-facing position. To decrease the chance of injury, avoid sledding downhill headfirst.
  • Think with your head when choosing a sled: Avoid sleds that are made out of thin plastic sheets. They can be pierced and steered by sharp objects that may be buried in the sledding path. The safest sleds are equipped with runners and a steering mechanism.
  • Protect your noggin: Children 12 years and younger should wear helmets when sledding, skiing or snowboarding to prevent head injuries. The most serious sledding injuries and most common skiing injuries result from collisions with fixed objects such as rocks or trees. Wearing a helmet can help reduce the seriousness of these injuries.
  • Fall like a pro: Learning how to fall is just as important as learning how to ski or snowboard. Whenever possible, skiers and snowboarders should fall forward or sideways instead of backward to decrease the chance of a serious knee injury.
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Identity Theft: Don’t Let it Happen to You

(NAPSI)-You can protect yourself from a serious crime. The FBI estimates 500,000 people were victims of identity theft last year. Investigators also have learned that the terrorists who planned the September 11 attacks used stolen Social Security numbers and false IDs to open checking accounts and fund their activities. With this in mind, government officials have cited identity theft as not only one of the fastest growing white-collar crimes in the nation, but also as a threat to national security.

A leading provider of electronic payment, risk management, and related information technology and business-process-improvement services, eFunds Corporation (NASDAQ: EFDS), has found that customers are willing to submit to a personal identifier at their financial institution to help prevent identity theft. However, they could be more vigilant in protecting themselves.

“After September 11, the American public, traditionally wary of intrusion into personal privacy, became more willing to accept stringent regulation to help fight terrorism,” said Adam Elliott, eFunds Vice President of Decision Support and Risk Management. “However, as early as last year, half of Americans said that they were not worried about identity theft.”
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What To Do When The Power Goes Out

Learn to be food safe during power outages.

(NAPSI)-Do you know how to keep your food safe during a power outage caused by storms or other events? The U.S. Department of Agriculture has the answers to help you keep your food safe.

• Keep the refrigerator and freezer doors closed as much as possible to maintain the cold temperatures. Each time the door is opened, a significant amount of cold air is lost. Never taste a food to determine its safety.

&#149 The refrigerator will keep food cold safely for about four hours if unopened. A full freezer will hold the temperature for approximately 48 hours (24 hours if it is half full and the door remains closed). Food may be safely refrozen if it still contains ice crystals or is at 40° F or below.

&#149 If possible, obtain dry or block ice to keep your refrigerator and freezer as cold as possible if the power is going to be out for a long time. Fifty pounds of dry ice should hold an 18-cubic-foot full freezer for two days.
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Do you have a working smoke detector? Are you sure?

Did you know?

  • 93% of all homes have at least one smoke detector, but almost half of home fires and three-fifths of fire deaths occur in homes with no detectors.
  • Having a smoke detector cuts your chance of dying nearly in half if you have a home fire.
  • Approximately one-third of all smoke detectors are not working, often due to dead batteries.
  • Like most electrical devices, smoke detectors will wear out and should be replaced every 8 to 10 years. After 10 years, an average of 27% of all smoke detectors fail to
    work properly.

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Are Loft Beds (Bunk Beds) Safe?

By: John Marcus

If you are trying to maximize the space in your room, consider purchasing a loft bed or bunk bed to elevate your sleeping area. With loft beds, the bed is elevated on a platform with space left underneath for living, working, or playing. Bunk beds work on the same principal, but with another bed underneath the top bunk. Both are popular with children and teens, who often have limited space in their rooms; however, many parents worry about their safety.

Each year, thousands of children are rushed to emergency rooms after falling from the top bunk of their bunk beds or loft beds, while many more receive less serious injuries that are not seen by a medical professional. Typically, the main reason of injury involving bunk beds or lofts beds is horseplay and not from improperly installed beds. Before you purchase bunk beds or loft beds for your child, consider the age of the child and plan to make rules regarding the use of the bed. Although younger children are thought to experience more injuries, the most problems occur with older children who are more apt to disregard rules and exhibit unsafe or risky behavior.
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