Preparing for a baby—whether you’re a new parent or an extended family member—is no small task. Along with a little bundle of joy comes a big responsibility for feeding, cleaning, and providing a secure environment. Bumps and boo-boos will be part of a child’s life. But make the effort to keep a baby safe from critical dangers like electricity.
Splish, splash safely
A baby’s first bathtub may be on a countertop or in the kitchen sink. Be mindful of outlets in the area. Be sure they are special ground fault circuit interrupter (GFCI) outlets that will minimize a shock if exposed to water during splashy bath time adventures. Also, set your water heater to 120 degrees or below to help prevent scalding and save energy.
While you were sleeping
Sleep may be fleeting with a new baby, but there are precautions. Install smoke alarms and carbon monoxide alarms outside all bedrooms and near fuel-burning heaters. Follow current guidelines on crib and mattress safety and sleep positions.
New and improved electronics come out every day to make parenting easier, especially for monitoring a baby in another room. Follow manufacturer-recommended safety measures, keeping cords contained and properly mounting gear. Take care not to overload outlets with new electronics.
Your baby won’t be little for long. Before you know it, he or she will be mobile and new responsibilities arise. You may think a room looks safe, but peer down to a baby’s level to see what else catches your eye. The new perspective may alert you to outlets, cords, and other hazards within a child’s reach.
You can’t plan for everything, and it may not be possible to test all products and baby items before you bring your baby home. Look for the Underwriters Laboratories (UL) mark on home electronics. UL tests items for product safety to give you a degree of comfort in new purchases.
Source: Kelly Trapnell, NRECA; Underwriters Laboratories