WASHINGTON, D.C. – Memorial Day weekend is the traditional kick-off for summer, a time when many people will enjoy more outdoor activities. From riding off-highway vehicles (OHVs), to taking a swim and firing up the grill, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) is reminding consumers of the hazards involved and the steps to help protect themselves and their families, especially children.
All-terrain vehicles are the most popular of the OHVs. They can be a lot of fun, but they can also be dangerous if not used properly. According to CPSC’s latest report, from 2017 through 2019, there were 2,178 deaths associated with OHVs, nearly 70% were ATVs and 283 OHV deaths were children under 16 years old. CPSC estimates that in 2021, there were 106,600 emergency room treated injuries associated with OHVs and 29% were to children under 16 years old. The dangers of riding OHVs are real and include overturning, collisions, and occupant ejection.
It is important to follow these ATV safety tips to ensure a safe and enjoyable ride.
- Training: Get hands-on training from a qualified instructor.
- Seats: Never ride with more passengers than there are seats. Most ATVs are designed for one rider.
- Stay Off Roads: Stay off paved roads. Never ride on public roads, except to cross, where permitted by law.
- No Drinking: Avoid drinking alcohol before or while driving an ATV.
- Age Limits: Riders younger than 16 should drive only age-appropriate youth models -never adult models.
- Safety Gear: Always wear a helmet and other protective gear, such as eye protection, boots, gloves, long pants and a long-sleeved shirt.
A dip in the pool may be a good way to escape the heat, but it is important to remember to stay vigilant when it comes to water safety. From 2017 through 2019, there were an average of 389 yearly pool- or spa-related, fatal drownings involving children younger than 15 years old and in 2021, there were nearly 6,800 nonfatal drowning injuries treated in emergency departments for that age group. Children under 5 years old accounted for 73% of the fatal child drownings.
To prevent tragedies from happening at the pool, CPSC recommends following these safety tips:
- Supervision: Never leave children unattended in or near a pool, and always designate an adult to watch over the pool area.
- Barriers: Install barriers around the pool, to prevent unsupervised access by children.
- Swimming Skills: Learn how to swim and teach your child how to swim.
- Drains: Keep children away from pool drains and ensure that they are properly covered to prevent entrapment.
- CPR: Learn how to perform CPR on children and adults.
- See additional pool safety tips and kids pool games at www.poolsafely.gov.
Outdoor Cooking and Grilling
Outdoor cooking and grilling are popular summer activities, and while fun and enjoyable, they can also be dangerous if not done with safety in mind. On average, 13 deaths occur every year, and in 2022, there were 5,400 ER-treated injuries associated with grills, burns being the most common.
Common grilling hazards include fires, burns, and carbon monoxide poisoning. To reduce these risks and have a safe grilling experience, follow some general safety tips.
- Recalls: Check www.cpsc.gov to see if the grill has been recalled – follow the remedy if recalled.
- Inspect: Look over the grill and any gas hoses for cracking, brittleness, holes and leaks. Replace, if necessary.
- Location: Use grills outside only, in well-ventilated areas and never indoors, in a garage, breezeway, carport, porch or under a surface that will burn.
- Starters: Only use appropriate fire starters and only before lighting the fire. Never add liquid fuel after trying to start a fire.
- Observe: Never leave a hot grill unattended and keep children away from the grill area.
- Clean up: Clean your grill with a ball of aluminum foil or nylon brushes, instead of wire grill brushes, to prevent stray wire brush strands from ending up in the food.
- Extinguishers: Keep a fire extinguisher nearby and make sure that everyone knows how to use it.
Report any unsafe products or any incidents where someone was hurt by a product to CPSC at SaferProducts.gov.
Individual Commissioners may have statements related to this topic. Please visit www.cpsc.gov/commissioners to search for statements related to this or other topics.
About the U.S. CPSC
The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) is charged with protecting the public from unreasonable risk of injury or death associated with the use of thousands of types of consumer products. Deaths, injuries, and property damage from consumer product-related incidents cost the nation more than $1 trillion annually. CPSC's work to ensure the safety of consumer products has contributed to a decline in the rate of injuries associated with consumer products over the past 50 years.
Federal law prohibits any person from selling products subject to a Commission ordered recall or a voluntary recall undertaken in consultation with the CPSC.
For lifesaving information: