Friday, December 13, 2013

Fox 8 House Calls: Car Seat Safety for Infants and Children

The 5-Step Test ©SafetyBeltSafe USA

The 5-Step Test is a simple way to see if the vehicle's adult-size seat belt fits the child properly.
  1. Does the child sit all the way back against the vehicle seat?
  2. Do the child’s knees bend comfortably at the edge of the vehicle seat?
  3. Does the belt cross the shoulder between the neck and arm?
  4. Is the lap belt as low as possible, touching the thighs?
  5. Can the child stay seated like this for the whole trip? 
If you answer  “no” to any of these questions, your child STILL needs a booster seat to make both the shoulder belt and the lap belt fit right and to keep them safest.

Friday, October 25, 2013

Community Car Seat Check

Join us on October 31st--Halloween!--to get your car seat or booster seat inspected for proper use. We will be at Costco, located at 421 West Wendover Ave. in Greensboro, from 10am-1pm.

This will be your last chance to make sure your children are riding properly in the appropriate seat before the Child Passenger Safety Diversion project kicks off. Beginning November 1st, law enforcement officers will be out en force writing tickets to anyone driving with unrestrained or improperly restrained children.

The event is free. Low-cost car seats will be available for families who are on financial assistance.

Monday, October 7, 2013

Halloween Safety Tips

By Ashley Mabina, M.D.

Fall is an exciting time for most kids—the weather is changing, the leaves are turning colors, and they have an opportunity to dress up and get treats!

Here are a couple of things to keep in mind as you set out to enjoy Halloween this year:

Safety First
  Never let your children trick or treat alone.  Walk in groups. Always have a trusted adult present.

  Discard any candy that is spoiled, unwrapped, or suspicious.

  Stay in well-lit areas, only visit well lit houses, and bring a flash light. 

  Trick-or-treat in neighborhoods/areas that are familiar to you.  Another option is to look out for events such as Harvest Festivals at local schools or churches that provide treats and games in a controlled environment.

  Pedestrian Safety:
  Walk, don’t run, use sidewalk if available.  If no sidewalk, walk at the far edge of the road facing traffic.
  Look both ways before crossing the street. 
  Never accept rides from strangers.

If you are planning on serving treats to children this year:
  Remove anything that can be an obstacle across lawns, steps, and porches. (Ex. garden hoses, toys, bikes, and lawn decorations). 
  Restrain your pets.

  Consider healthy packaged treats including: cereal bars, snack packs of dried fruits, baked pretzels, trail mix, sugar-free gum or hard candy, animal crackers
  Only serve individually wrapped items

  If you’re having a party, offer games that gives kids the opportunity to get their daily dose of 60 minutes of physical activity.

Additional Tips for Parents/Guardians:
Help your kids enjoy the day without over-indulging in candy:
  Give your children a good meal before trick-or-treating. 
  Wait until you get home to sort through the candy. 
  Attempt to ration treats for the days following Halloween. 

Make sure your child’s costume is bright and reflective, and short enough to prevent tripping, getting tangled, or coming in contact with flames. 
  Look for costumes with labels stating they are flame resistant

American Academy of Pediatrics Halloween Safety Tips
CDC Halloween Health and Safety Tips 

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Seat Check Saturday 9/21/13

Make sure your child's car seat or booster seat is properly installed on “National Seat Check Saturday,” on September 21.  

We will have English- and Spanish-speaking certified child passenger safety technicians available to provide hands-on instruction on installing car and booster seats at Burlington Coat Factory located at 3022 High Point Rd. from 10am to 1pm.

Correctly used child safety seats can reduce the risk of death by as much as 71 percent. We're here to help all parents make sure their car seats are used and installed correctly and that the whole family is buckled up every time on every ride. 

Car seat inspections offer drivers the chance to receive assistance and guidance from certified car seat technicians regarding proper installation of their child safety and booster seats. 

Parents can also check their own car and booster seats by using this car seat check list. Certified child passenger safety technicians are available to help or double check your work. Parents and caregivers can locate an event in their community by visiting the Safe Kids website at

Buckle Up Every Ride

Monday, August 12, 2013

Heads Up!

by Leigh-Anne Cioffredi, MD/MPH

As the summer winds down and the school year approaches there’s an increasing ability for kids to get active, particularly in sports.  One of the most important safety concerns related to increased activity is concussion prevention.  

A concussion occurs when there is a blow to the head causing the head to move rapidly back and forth.  This can injure the brain causing a mild traumatic brain injury.  They can occur in any sport, in a motor vehicle accident, diving into the pool or simply falling down on a hard floor, so it’s important to know how to recognize them. 

To help recognize a concussion, you should watch for the following two things:

1.      A forceful blow to the head or body resulting in a rapid movement of the head,


2.      Any change in the child’s behavior, thinking, or physical functioning – this includes changes in memory, nausea and vomiting, headache or just not feeling right. 

If you suspect your child has suffered a concussion it is important to seek medical attention.

Importantly there are ways to prevent concussions. 
  • Be sure to fasten the seat belt while riding in a car.  Set a good example and fasten your own, and make sure you child has fastened theirs correctly.
  • Make sure your child wears appropriate protective gear during recreational activities.  It is important to make sure the equipment fits properly.  This is the only way to ensure the most protection. 
  • When bicycling, or engaging in any recreational activity that may result in head injury such as football, hockey, skiing or snowboarding, wear protective headgear.
  • Use pool safety: Do not allow you child to dive in water shallower than 9 feet deep. 
  • Most importantly if your child suffers from a concussion, do not allow them to return to play until their symptoms have resolved.  It is very dangerous to return to play before the brain has had time to heal fully.  Though this is often not an easy task, especially with an active child, it is the most important step in preventing another concussion and further brain injury. 

For more information on concussion visit the following websites:

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Learn to Swim

Summer is here and the kids want to play in the do the adults! Make it a safe summer and sign the kids up for swim lessons. Assign a water watcher to keep kids in sight at all times. Below are the reasons why.

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Never Leave Your Child Alone

As parents, we try to do everything possible to keep our children safe, especially in our vehicles.  Unfortunately, the number one cause of non-crash, vehicle related deaths for children is Heatstroke.  So far in 2013, 10 children have died due to children being left alone in cars.  Many of these tragedies occurred when the parent or caregiver forgot about the child being in the vehicle with them.  Some of the deaths occurred by children playing in an unattended vehicle and getting trapped inside.  Others are sometimes intentionally left alone in a vehicle.

Small children are at a higher risk of heatstroke due to their body's inability to control their body temperature as well as adults do.  A child's body can heat up 3 to 5 times faster than an adult.  In as little as 10 minutes, a car's temperature can increase by 20 degrees.  That can be potentially dangerous or fatal if a child is left alone in the vehicle.

There is something you can do as a parent to help prevent a tragedy from happening.
ACT:  Avoid, Create, Take Action.
Avoid heatstroke by never leaving your child alone in a vehicle, not even for a minute.     Make sure to keep your car doors locked when your car is unattended to keep small children from playing inside the vehicle.
Create reminders and habits, such as placing an item in the back seat you will need at your final destination, such as a purse, cell phone, laptop, etc.  This could make you open the backdoor to remove the item at your destination.  Always check the backseat when you exit the car.  The "Look Before You Lock" campagin by NHTSA promotes the question to parents of "Where's Baby?".  Another possible reminder is to have the daycare notify you if your child doesn't show up for daycare as usual.
Take Action.  If you see a child left unattended in a vehicle, call 911.  Emergency workers are trained to handle these situations.

The number of tragedies in 2013 is a reminder to all of us that this can happen to anyone.  There is additional information available through the following links:

Monday, May 13, 2013


National Safe Kids Day is a celebration of the injury prevention efforts of Safe Kids Coalitions all over the country.  Locally, Safe Guilford and Safe Kids Randolph County will be celebrating Safe Kids Day on Wednesday, May 15, from 6:30am until 6:30pm, with an event at News 2 Studios.  The event will feature a car seat safety check, a display for NLYCA (efforts on the hazards of children left along in hot cars), Spot the Tot (the dangers of children playing in and around cars and the possibility of back-overs), and there will be cotton candy for purchase as well!  The link below will provide you more details on the event.

Make plans to join us as we celebrate the injury prevention efforts of Safe Kids Guilford County and Safe Kids Randolph County.

Please help Safe Kids Guilford County by donating to support our efforts to prevent injury in children 0-14.  Donations can be made using the following link:

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Why Backup Cams Should Be Mandated in Vehicles

Celebrating Safe Kids Day 2013

Something new and exciting is happening in May.  Safe Kids will be celebrating is first ever Safe Kids Day on May 18th.  Communities across the United Sates are joining in to Celebrate Safe Kids Day with local events and fundraising efforts.  Our goal is to raise awareness about the ways we can protect our children from preventable injuries, and to raise funds to support our local and national injury prevention programs.  

When a child dies or is seriously injured, the lives of families and entire communities are changed forever.  In the United States, injuries are the #1 cause of death in children.  Millions more are injured in ways that can affect them for a lifetime.  This is a problem we can solve.  This is what Safe Kids Day is all about.

In our community, Safe Kids Day events will take place on Wednesday, May 15th.  Safe Kids Guilford County will be partnering with Safe Kids Randolph County to host a Child Passenger Safety Seat Check Event at WFMY News 2, 1615 Phillips Ave., Greensboro from 6:30 AM to 6:30 PM.   

The event will also include an interactive display concerning Never Leave Your Child Alone/Children in and around Cars/Spot the Tot initiatives.  The display will show you how hot a car can get, even when the weather doesn't seem that warm outside.  It will also feature information about teaching your children not to play in or around cars, and information on how difficult it may be to see a child near your vehicle when backing up.  The event will also have refreshments available for sale, and more!

Please join us for this worthwhile cause as we continue our efforts to prevent childhood injuries. To learn more about Safe Kids Day and how you can help by donating, visit our fundraising page at .  

Thank you for supporting our efforts in the community to keep children safe!

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Operation Medicine Drop- What's in YOUR medicine cabinet?

Has your medicine cabinet become full of many unused or unwanted medicines?  Are some medicines partially used and no longer needed, or even expired?  Do you have pet medicines?

Now is the time to clean out your medicine cabinet and safely dispose of those unwanted and unused medicines.  The week of March 17-23 is National Poison Prevention Week.  It's also the week of NC Safe Kids' Operation Medicine Drop Events throughout North Carolina.  Operation Medicine Drop is a partnership of Safe Kids North Carolina, the Riverkeepers of North Carolina, NC State Bureau of Investigation, Community Anti-Drug Coalitions of North Carolina and local law enforcement agencies working together to encourage the public to safely dispose of unused and unwanted medication. By providing safe and secure ways for people to get rid of unwanted prescription and over-the-counter medications, Operation Medicine Drop helps prevent accidental poisonings and drug abuse while protecting our waters.

The process is simple.  Bring your unused, unwanted, or expired medicines to one of the OMD event locations.  Be sure to bring the medicines in their original bottle, box, or tube.  You MAY mark through your name and address on the label, but not necessary.  No sharps or needles will be accepted.

Guilford County has the following events scheduled:

Friday, March 15- 1pm-5:30pm
McLeansville Lions Club, 1124 Mt. Hope Church Rd., McLeansville
Saturday, March 23
McLarty Drug- 819 N. Main St., High Point.  9am-1pm

Burton Pharmacy- 120 E. Lindsay St., Greensboro.  10am-2pm
Greensboro- Walgreens locations:
300 E. Cornwallis Dr.  10am-2pm
3529 N. Elm St.  10am-2pm
3701 High Point Rd.  10am-2pm

To find a location near you, please visit: or

Monday, January 14, 2013

The Dangers of TV Tip-Overs

Modern technology has provided us with many great improvements to our favorite electronics, such as televisons.  One of the biggest improvements is the depth of televisions.  Years ago, TVs were large, heavy, and the depth was so big the TV took up a lot of room in the house.  Today, TVs are slim, lightweight, and can be hung on the wall. 

Unfortunately, even with all the advances in technology, there has been an increase in the number of tip-over injuries around children.  From 2000 to 2010 averages, a child dies every three weeks from a TV tipping over.  Every 30 minutes a child goes to the ER for a TV tip-over injury.  Many of these accidents happen to children five years old and younger.  Children are naturally curious and love to climb.

There are precautions parents and caregivers can use to prevent these type of injuries from happening in their homes.
  • Assess the stability of the TVs in your home.  Do they move easily?  Are the TVs sitting high up on a dresser or cabinet that a child may climb on creating a tipping effect.
  • Mount flat screen TVs to the wall to reduce the risk of TVs toppling off stands. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions to ensure you protect your wall and have a secure fit.
  • Avoid placing remotes and toys in places where children may want to climb and reach them.
For more information on TV tip-over dangers, click on the link to watch the video.