From play dates to sleep-overs, through their lifetime your child will likely spend a lot of time at friends’ homes. As separation anxiety fades, these visits get easier for both of you as your child ages. And yet, every new household brings a new set of risks. While it’s important to encourage your child’s independence, it’s equally important to make certain they are entering a safe environment. Most parents know to ask basic questions about supervision, house rules, etc. before entrusting their child to another household. But too often they fail to consider those areas of risk that are often responsible for childhood accidents in a home. To ensure the safety of your child at all ages, discuss these common household hazards with any adult whose home your child will be visiting.
The recent crash of the Costa Concordia cruise ship stunned even veteran cruise travelers and boating enthusiasts. Disturbing pictures of the listing ship are often accompanied by the rhetorical tagline: “Too big to sink?” In fact, the ship’s mammoth size and relative newness made the crash all the more shocking. Launched in 2006, the Costa Concordia was able to comfortably carry over 4,000 passengers and crew, was in excellent shape, and outfitted with modern sailing and safety technology. Despite having, in theory, everything needed to keep her passengers safe, this mammoth ship was undone by the same flaw that often causes such accidents: human error.