Kids are naturally energetic and curious. They can get into absolutely everything, especially what you don’t want them to. Because of this, kids can get in to danger and we must be diligent about electrical safety in our homes.
Look out for frayed wires! Fraying typically happens on either end of the wire and can occur because of time or the way in which we use the wires. If they are pinched or bent against the wall by a piece of furniture, a break is likely to happen in the cable and our wires can get damaged. And while a frayed wire may still work, it is dangerous to keep around.
Children can find frayed wires and hurt themselves due to the overheating of the wires, the sharpness of the frayed wire itself or the electrical charge that can run through them if touched with wet or sticky hands, something young kids tend to have. Don’t try to repair a frayed wire. Replace it.
Keep your wires close to the walls. If you have wire running through the middle of rooms or doorways, they are easy for kids to trip over which will cause harm. Keep wires out of well-travelled areas.
Check your outlets! Kids love these things! Naturally curious children tend to stick things into the mysterious holes. If you have a lot of outlets within reach of children in your home, make sure they are tamper resistant receptacles or that the outlets are covered.
Tamper resistant receptacles stop objects other than electrical plugs from being inserted. They have been required in new builds and renovations since 2008. If you have a newer home, you likely have these already. If not, or if you’re unsure, your outlets can be inspected and new ones installed, if needed, by a professional.
Outlet protectors can also be purchased and put into outlets. For them to be effective, remember to place them back in the outlet after using it.
Examine your lights! Any bulbs that we use in our kids rooms should be LED and produce lower heat so they are not burning to touch. As well, we should make sure that no lights bulbs are touching blankets, curtains, stuffed animals, scattered clothes or books in our kids' rooms or the rest of our house.
And don’t forget to teach your kids about electrical safety! Instruct them about what they should stay away from, look out for and why.