OnSafety is the Official Blog Site of the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission. Here you'll find the latest safety information as well as important messages that will keep you and your family safe. We hope you'll visit often!

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ATV Riders: Keep Your Family Safe and On the Trail

Man wearing a helmet riding an ATV on dirtDo you have a passion for ATV riding? Do you throw caution to the wind when you ride?

What will the consequences mean for both you and your family?

When you ride, safety matters.

We’re concerned about the safety of your family. We’re not trying to take your ATVs away. We only want to make the riding experience safer so more riders stay alive and families stay together.

ATV safety matters because keeping you and your family safe matters.

About 700 people die every year in ATV-related accidents and another 136,000 go to hospital emergency rooms. Many of these injuries are life changing. So far this year, CPSC is aware of preliminary reports of 130 adults and 28 children under the age of 16 who have died in ATV-related incidents around the country. At least 14 adults and three children are reported to have died during Memorial Day weekend alone this year.

Every ATV rider in your family should take a hands-on training course taught by a certified instructor. Classes are offered by the ATV Safety Institute, local ATV rider groups, and some state departments of natural resources, state highway departments, and other agencies responsible for regulating ATV use. The National 4-H Council also sponsors educational seminars on safe riding for children and teenagers.

At CPSC, we know what can happen with ATVs, because for many years our staff has been investigating the ATV deaths reported to us.  We sit across from parents and grandparents who often say, “If I had only known.”

We believe there would be a dramatic decline in deaths and injuries if riders follow these rules in addition to taking a safety training course:

  • Always wear a helmet and other protective gear.
  • Do not carry any passengers on single-rider ATVs.
  • Ride off-road, not on paved roads.
  • Know the terrain.
  • Keep children younger than 16 on youth ATVs and off adult ATVs.

Know ATV safety to keep everyone in your family, you included, safe on the trails and help curb the rise of ATV deaths and injuries that happen every summer.

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This address for this post is: http://www.cpsc.gov/onsafety/2012/06/atv-riders-keep-your-family-safe-and-on-the-trail/

CPSC Science: Fireworks Injuries

UPDATE, 6/26/2013: We have updated this infographic with 2012 injury and death information. Here’s the new infographic.

 

Fireworks Injuries infographic

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This address for this post is: http://www.cpsc.gov/onsafety/2012/06/cpsc-science-fireworks-injuries/

Safety for Dad

Dads do lawnmowers. Dads do grills. This Father’s Day, give your dad the information that will help him do what he does safely.

Each year, about 110 people die and about 87,000 people are treated in emergency rooms from injuries associated with power lawnmowers. This includes walk-behind mowers, riding mowers, lawn tractors and garden tractors.

If you’re buying dad a new walk-behind rotary lawn mower, consider these factors. Then remind him about safety:

  • Fill the fuel tank before starting the engine. NEVER refuel when the mower is running or hot.
  • Pick up twigs, rocks and other debris before you mow. The whole family can help with this. Just make sure that children clear the area before the actual mowing begins.
  • Cut dry grass, not wet grass. Wet clippings could jam the rotary blade and shut down the engine. When you need to remove clippings from the discharge chute, STOP the mower.
  • Push the mower forward. Don’t pull it backward.
  • On lawn slopes, if you are using a walk-behind rotary mower, mow across the slope. If you drive a riding mower, drive up and down the slope, not across it.
  • Check safety features often and repair or replace them if needed. Do not remove any safety devices from a mower.
  • When using an electric mower, organize your work so you first cut the area closest to the electrical outlet and then gradually move away. This will minimize your chance of running over the power cord and getting electrocuted.

Dads grilling
As for the grill, here’s a maintenance and safety checklist for gas grills. Give him these key points:

  • Check the grill’s hoses for cracking, brittleness, holes and leaks. The hose or tubing shouldn’t have any sharp bends.
  • Hoses need to be as far from the hot surfaces as possible. Don’t let grease drip on them.
  • Any time you reconnect a grill to the LP gas container, or if you smell gas, check for leaks. To do this, open the gas supply valve fully and apply a soapy solution (one part water, one part liquid detergent) with a brush at the connection points. If you see bubbles, there’s a leak. Turn off the gas, tighten the connection and test again. If you can’t stop the leak, replace the leaking parts.
  • Do NOT light a grill if you detect a leak.

On average, about 3,600 people are treated in emergency rooms each year from injuries associated with gas, charcoal or propane grills. Of the 12 deaths each year associated with grills, about two-thirds are from carbon monoxide poisoning when a grill is used in an enclosed space like inside a house.

When grilling, always follow these safety tips:

  • Only use a grill at least 10 feet away from your house or any building. Do not grill in a garage, breezeway, carport, porch, or under any surface that will burn.
  • Never leave a grill unattended.
  • Keep children away from the grill. The outside surface can burn when touched.
  • Always follow the instructions that came with the grill.

All of this advice is meant to ensure that dad doesn’t spend Father’s Day in the emergency room. Have a happy and safe Father’s Day!

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This address for this post is: http://www.cpsc.gov/onsafety/2012/06/safety-for-dad/

PoolSafely: Drowning Is Leading Cause of Child Deaths

Children younger than 5 represent nearly 75% of pool and spa deaths, the latest U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission data shows. African-American and Hispanic children are at high risk. CPSC held a media event and Twitter chat on May 24, 2012, to promote water safety.


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This address for this post is: http://www.cpsc.gov/onsafety/2012/05/poolsafely-drowning-is-leading-cause-of-child-deaths/

Death, Severe Neck Injuries Prompt Pool Slide Recall

Do you have an inflatable slide for your pool? If so, please pay close attention to this recall of the Banzai Inflatable Pool Slide.

The slide is specifically for in-ground pools. Here’s what it looks like:

Banzai Water Slide

A 29-year-old Colorado mother died after fracturing her neck going down this slide. She hit her head against the concrete edge of the pool when the slide partly deflated. CPSC and the firms recalling this slide are aware of two other serious injuries that have happened in a similar way:

  • A 24-year-old man from Springfield, Mo., became a quadriplegic
  • A woman from Allentown, Pa., fractured her neck.

About 21,000 of the slides were sold at Walmart and Toys R Us from January 2005 through June 2009 for about $250. During use, they can deflate. When this happens, the person on the slide can hit the ground underneath and become injured. The slide is also unstable and can topple over and has inadequate warnings and instructions.

The recalled slides are vinyl with a blue base, yellow sliding mat and an arch over the top of the slide. Hose water can be sprayed on the slide’s downward slope from a nozzle on the arch. The words “Banzai Splash” are printed in a circular blue, orange and white logo that is shaped like a wave on either side of the slide.

We urge you to stop using this slide immediately and return to Walmart or Toys R Us for a full refund.

For additional information, from Walmart, call (800) 925-6278 between 7 a.m. and 9 p.m. CT Monday through Friday, or visit the firm’s website at www.walmartstores.com. For additional information from Toys R Us, call (800) 869-7787 between 9 a.m. and 9 p.m. ET Monday through Saturday and between 10 a.m. and 7 p.m. Sunday, or visit the firm’s website at www.toysrus.com.

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This address for this post is: http://www.cpsc.gov/onsafety/2012/05/death-severe-neck-injuries-prompt-pool-slide-recall/