Unsurprisingly, kids and electricity aren’t a great combination. Exploring little ones can easily fall foul of electrical appliances and components and put themselves in danger.
According to Electrical Safety First, about 60% of parents do electrical DIY as part of preparing for a new baby. However, they often miss the simplest ways to make their home safe.
To help you make your home safe for your own or any visiting little ones, we’ve come up with 3 top tips for keeping kids safe from electricity.
1. Make sure you have RCD protection
RCD stands for residual current device. It’s a safety device that switches electricity off automatically if it detects a fault. So if you touch something live, like a bare wire, an RCD is designed to cut off the power before you get a fatal electric shock.
RCDs are usually installed in consumer units, where they can protect multiple circuits and their wires, sockets and appliances. You can also get RCDs built into sockets and portable RCDs that plug into sockets if your consumer unit doesn’t have them.
Some people choose to use socket covers if they have small children. However, the only way to make a socket safe is to make sure it has RCD protection. A socket cover actually does very little to improve the safety of plugs and will not prevent an electric shock if the installation isn’t safe.
2. Don’t mix water and electricity
Most people are aware that water and electricity is a lethal combination and will make sure that electrical items stay out of the bathroom. However, what’s easy to forget is that water and electricity can mix outside the bathroom.
If children have been in the bath or a paddling pool, make sure they’re completely dry before letting them loose in the house. Wet hands on switches and plugs can lead to dangerous electric shocks. You should also keep drinks away from devices like TVs, computers and game consoles.
3. Keep appliances switched off
If you have kids around your home, it’s a good idea to keep all your appliances switched off when you’re not using them. This means that if they get damaged or come into contact with water they’re not as hazardous.
You should also make sure that you don’t leave appliance cords, like phone chargers, plugged in and switched on. Young children might put them in their mouths, which can be dangerous.
Following these 3 tips should help you make your electrical installation safer for kids. If you want to find out if your electrical installation has RCD protection or need any advice from an electrician, we can help. Fill in our online form and we’ll put you in touch with up to 4 electricians in your local area.