October 26, 2020
‘It Only Takes a Split Second’ - Raising awareness this National Kidsafe Day

Kidsafe Victoria has issued a reminder that all it takes is a split second for a child to be seriously injured, with an average of 3 children dying every week from preventable injuries in Australia.

The call comes on National Kidsafe Day, Tuesday 27th October, the aim of which is to highlight key injury causes – the majority of which can happen in a split second – and key steps to reduce the risk of injury and death.

Kidsafe Victoria CEO, Melanie Courtney, highlighted that children’s curiosity and lack of awareness of danger places them at increased risk of injury.

“This year has been like no other. With more children at home and parents juggling working from home commitments with remote learning, sadly we have seen a spike in child deaths from unintentional injuries, often referred to as ‘accidents’.”

Data from the Victorian Coroners Court reveals that sadly two Victorian children – aged 3 and 4 years – have died from injuries received from curtain and blind cord incidents in the last 12 months.

“Looped curtain and blind cords pose a significant strangulation hazard for children; it only takes a few seconds for a young child to get tangled in a cord that is too long or looped, but that few seconds can lead to a lifetime of devastation”, said Ms Courtney.

Other hazards that can change a life in a split second include a cup of hot tea or coffee left in reach of a child; backyard swimming pool gates propped open; unstable furniture; household cleaners accessible under the sink; a car reversing out of the driveway; and accessible button batteries.

“Keeping safety front of mind and ensuring there are a number of key safety measures in place – including active adult supervision – can help to prevent a child from losing their life or suffering a serious injury” said Ms Courtney.

As part of National Kidsafe Day, Kidsafe is urging families to make it a priority to check their homes and take action on items such as curtain and blind cord tensioning devices.

For more information and resources to help keep children safe, including safety checklists and tips, please visit the home page on our website https://www.kidsafevic.com.au/home-safety/