Get Smart About Safety As Kids Head Back To School

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Reading, writing, math, and so much more to learn, it’s back to school time! As kids get back to the books, school sports and other fun activities, CPSC encourages families to get smart about safety!

Here’s why. Injuries and even deaths among children are real possibilities if proper precautions are not taken. Let’s take a look at some of the data.

Distracted Walking:
In 2017, 1,800 people were seen in emergency rooms for injuries that occurred while they were walking and texting, playing a game, or otherwise looking at a cell phone.

Bicycles:
The most frequent injuries seen in hospital emergency departments associated with bicycles were fractures, contusions/abrasions, and lacerations.
There were an estimated 168,600 emergency department-treated bicycle injuries from 2015 to 2017, for children under the age of 16 years old.

Playgrounds:
Each year, more than 230,000 injuries associated with playgrounds are treated in emergency departments. CPSC has investigated 24 deaths associated with playground equipment that occurred since 2013.

Backpacks:
If your child complains of an aching back, it could be the result of a heavy backpack filled with books. In 2017, an estimated 7,800 kids from 5 to 18 years old were treated in emergency rooms for injuries related to backpacks.

Movable Soccer Goal Deaths and Injuries:

The CPSC is aware of 12 reported fatalities involving children under the age of 16 between 2000 and 2015, due to soccer-goal tip overs or structural failure. During 2000 to 2015, there were about 3,300 emergency department-treated soccer goal tip over- or structural failure-related injuries involving children under the age of 16.

Are you ready to get even smarter about safety? Here’s a tip a day to help keep the injuries away!

Monday:
Make wearing a helmet a priority if your child is riding a bike to school. Also, wearing a helmet while cycling, playing football or baseball can significantly reduce the risk of head injury.

Tuesday:
Take time to make sure your child’s backpack not too heavy. The American Chiropractic Association recommends that a backpack weigh no more than 10 percent of a child’s weight.

Wednesday:
Walk safely! Kids are getting hurt while texting and talking on their cell phones while crossing the street and wall in heavy pedestrian traffic. Kids, keep your head up!

Thursday:
Think safety first when it comes to children’s clothing. Never buy/allow kids to wear clothes with drawstrings around the hood/neck—it’s a strangulation danger!

Friday:
Fun Fridays at the playground or soccer game after school? Remember, it doesn’t have to be hot outside for playground equipment to heat up. Never let kids play on slide/surfaces that are burning hot! If it’s hot to the touch, it’s too hot for your child.
And on the soccer field, make sure all movable soccer goals are anchored securely at all times.

For more ways to get smart about safety, check out our sports education center here: https://www.cpsc.gov/safety-education/safety-guides/sports-fitness-and-recreation.

See more in our Nine Innings of Brain Safety in Baseball.
And 4 Quarters for football safety.

Also check CPSC.gov for recalls – especially, clothes, school supplies, and bikes.
Sign up for email alerts of CPSC recalled children’s items sent directly to your inbox.

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