|Teach Children Outdoor Electrical Safety|
|Library of Articles - Child Safety|
With more sunny, warm days we are all drawn outside to play in the fresh air, especially children. As the kite flying, tree climbing and splashing in puddles resumes, Safe Electricity recommends families review electrical safety rules with their children to encourage safe outdoor play.
Point out overhead power lines and electrical equipment to your children, and emphasize that they should never climb on or play near them. Kids often do not understand the dangers of electricity and electrical equipment.”
Safe Electricity recommends that children be taught to follow these rules:
When designing an outdoor play area for your children make sure to take precautions before starting your project. Do not install playground equipment or swimming pools underneath or near power lines. Installation of either will require some digging; be sure to call your local underground utility locating service to have buried lines marked so you can avoid serious injury and damage.
Protect all family members from serious shock and injuries by installing and using outdoor outlets with ground fault circuit interrupters (GFCI). Use portable GFCIs for outdoor outlets that don’t have them.
Be careful using electrical appliances outdoors, even if plugged into GFCI-equipped outlets. Never touch an electrical appliance while in a pool or hot tub. Keep all electrical appliances at least ten feet away from pools, ponds and wet surfaces. Inform your kids that it is never safe to swim in a pool or lake when a storm is brewing.
Water always attracts kids, but water and electricity never mix. Teach older children to exercise caution before plugging in a radio, CD player, or any electrical gadget outdoors, and never leave any electrical appliances outside.
When you are done using a radio, CD player, or any other electrical gadget outdoors, bring it inside with you. If it rains, the electrical device could get wet and cause an electrical shock when you unplug it later. If the weather looks threatening, pack up and go indoors.
Spring showers bring more than tempting puddles for kids to splash in, they can also leave electric hazards behind. Flooded areas are never safe spots to wade or play in, and may be in contact with energized electrical equipment or fallen power lines.
Make sure all of your family members know to stay away from downed power lines and wires, and tell children to report any fallen or dangling wires to an adult. Downed power lines are extremely dangerous for children as well as adults. Always assume that any power line is fully charged and stay far away. Call your local electric company immediately if you or your child encounters a downed power line.
It's a good idea to include utility emergency numbers with other posted emergency phone numbers, and instruct children how to call for help in an emergency.