Combat common hazards for a safer garage
Many people select their garage as the safest place for toxic materials like cleaning products and pesticides without considering how to store them. Hazards in the garage don’t stop with poisons. Poor organization, clutter and heavy garage doors also pose significant risk to children. The Kohl’s Cares Grow Safe & Healthy Program has developed a safety list to create a garage environment that is clean, safe and injury-free.
Poisons and Flammables
Each year, there are 6,600 garage fires in homes that result in significant property loss, injury and death.
- Many products commonly stored in the garage are potential fire hazards and poisonous to children and pets.
- Parents should be aware of look-alike poisons. These are poisonous materials like cleaners, washer fluid and mouse poison that resemble items kids are familiar with like sports drinks, juices and candy.
- Common products that are poisonous to children include: pesticides, rust remover, gasoline, kerosene, paint thinner, lighter fluid, lamp oil, antifreeze, windshield washer fluid.
Storage and Clutter
Slips and falls account for one third of injuries that occur in the garage.
- Toys stored on high shelves encourage kids to climb unsteady structures to reach them. Ladders should not be stored vertically – it could fall and hit someone or a child might be tempted to climb it. Items like rakes and brooms should be mounted on the way and out of reach.
- Garages should have adequate lighting to ensure all family members can navigate the garage with ease.
Each year 20,000 people require emergency treatment for garage door accidents.
- Garage doors are extremely heavy. Children should be reminded not to play underneath them.
- Garage openers should be kept out of children’s reach. Children should not be allowed to play with garage openers even when you are supervising them.
- Garage doors should be inspected each month for irregularities in the spring, cables, rollers or pulleys. A repairman trained in garage door maintenance should be called to address any suspected issues.
For more family safety information, visit the Stay Safe section of this website.