Safely Get Children to their Fourth Birthday
The City of Weston is a #SaferBy4 Community!
The Weston City Commission unanimously adopted a Resolution on March 2, 2015 supporting the Department of Children and Families #SaferBy4 initiative and continues the efforts today to educate, inform and protect children from harm.
#SaferBy4 was created to reduce preventable child deaths due to drowning and sleep habits, informing and educating families and care givers about actions and steps to prevent child fatalities, safely getting children to their fourth birthday.
- Over 200 child deaths have been reported to the Department of Children and Families in Broward County in the last five years.
- Nearly half of those reported resulted from drowning and accidental suffocation or strangulation from an unsafe sleep environment.
- The most preventable cause of death of children under one year of age was accidental suffocation or strangulation from an unsafe sleep environment.
- 77% of Broward County children who died in the last five years were ages 3 and under.
BABIES SLEEP SAFEST: ABCs of safe sleep
Alone - On their Back – In a Crib –
How different sleep situations can be dangerous:
Although they may look cute, pillows, blankets, bumper pads and toys can suffocate your infant.
Despite popular belief, sleep aids such as wedges and sleep positioners can increase the risk of infant death due to suffocation. If the infant shifts at all, the soft objects can actually trap the baby in a fatal position.
Sleeping with your infant may be more convenient and look peaceful, but the risk of an adult rolling onto or pinning the baby and killing the infant by suffocation increases immensely through co-sleep.
Each baby should have its own bed – even other siblings increase the risk of suffocation.
Adult beds, air mattresses, beanbags, reclining chairs, sofas, etc. are not made for babies and wedge a baby, causing suffocation.
Any loose cables, wires, bumper pad strings, etc. around the crib could be fire hazards and/or wrap around your baby’s neck and strangle him or her.
If you do not place your baby on the back to sleep, your baby’s airway may not be clear.
There are many layers of protection that can prevent drowning deaths:
SUPERVISION: Someone should always be actively watching children when they are in the pool. This means don’t play around on your phone or get involved in a big conversation while watching the kids. Drowning can happen in just a few minutes. Designate a “Water Watcher” to keep an eye on swimmers.
BARRIERS: A child should never be able to enter the pool area unaccompanied by an adult. Barriers physically block a child from the pool. Barriers include: child-proof locks on all doors, a pool fence with self-latching and self-closing gates, as well as door and pool alarms. Pool covers may also be used but make sure it is a professional cover fitted for your pool. A simple canvas covering can be a drowning hazard and entrap a child in the water. Florida law requires barriers for home pools.
SWIMMING LESSONS: The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that children ages 4 and older learn to swim in order to help prevent drowning. It also encourages caregivers of children ages 1-3 to consider swim instruction for their child, as studies have shown it reduces drowning incidents. Caregivers should learn to swim as well. To find swimming lessons in your area, contact your local YMCA, city facilities, or swim school or call 2-1-1. Many of these programs have scholarships available.
EMERGENCY PREPAREDNESS: The moment a child stops breathing there is a small, precious window of time in which resuscitation may occur, but only if someone knows what to do. Even if you’re not a parent, it’s important to learn CPR. The techniques are easy to learn and can mean the difference between life and death. In an emergency, it is critical to have a phone nearby and immediately call 911. To learn more about CPR or register for a free CPR certification course, call Weston Fire Rescue at 954-389-2015.
For more information: Child Fatality Prevention http://www.dcf.state.fl.us/childfatality/prevention.shtml