Super bowl Sunday wasn't such a winner for one family that had the misfortune of being victim to an in-home accident that was easily preventable. Their four year old child, playing hide and seek with a sibling became stuck in the washer and had to be removed with the Jaws of Life. Though not filled with water or turned on to dry the clothes, an empty Washer/Dryer can become a deadly accident waiting to happen. Though this incident ended up with just a scared toddler and a dance with the jaws of life, it could have had catastrophic consequences. Hundreds of children are treated each year for accidents related to washers and dryers. Children have also been killed due to drowning in a filled washer and as well as from being stuck in a dryer that has been turned on. These are areas of great concern and should be dealt with immediately. "Safety Dad" knows all too well the dangers the home can pose to a family with small children. Follow our basic safety tips for washer/dryer rooms and you can cut down on all future accidents in this area.
1. Move all detergents and other caustic material on a shelf up above the washer/dryer or in a locked/baby-proofed cabinet
2. Locking straps should be used to keep the doors of both the washer/dryer locked when not in use
3. Remove any objects that a child could use as a stepping stone to reach the top of the washer/dryer. A child that has fallen head first into a washer most likely wont have the strength to lift themselves out
4 Gate off the washer/dryer room all together. A room that is gated off sends a message to any child that this area is off limits.
5. Educate your children about the dangers of this area. Children need to be made aware and it is never too early to learn.
6. Always be aware. Remember, most home accidents are preventable.