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When it happened, I immediately questioned why I wasn’t proactive in teaching my family how to be safe in their own back yard. As a safety consultant, I regularly teach employees safe techniques in the workplace. I remind them about job related hazards in an effort to create positive habits. Then why didn’t I take the same approach with my family?!

It was a sunny day and my ten-year old daughter was helping clean the garage. Those weekend chores often come with weekend distractions so I knew she wasn’t always careful when completing her chores. After all, they have things to do and places to go on a Saturday afternoon! It was her last chore before meeting up with friends and her mind was not on the task at hand. The broom hung on a wall hook by the back door. Near the broom hook was the metal shovel she hung last week while helping me work in the garden. I didn’t notice the shovel hung blade side up until that moment! It all happened in slow motion.. the moment she reached for the broom, I could see what was going to happen…the shovel fell from the hook, blade first, crashing down on the left side of her head! There was no reaction time-just a horrible screaming sound as the blade bounced off her skull!

After the crying and panic subsided, we inspected her head and found a small cut, a bump sure to create a bruise and bit of blood. Both of us were pretty shaken but I managed to get her to the bathroom to inspect the injury closer. Thank goodness that was the extent of the impact! I tended her injury, I made sure she was ok, and after the guilt neglecting to teaching her about putting the hazard ends downward on the hook subsided, I promised myself I would make more time to teach my child of homestead hazards! What seemed like common sense was not the common practice – education was needed to ensure she understood how to protect herself and the rest of our family.

Hazards lurk all around our homes. When was the last time you took a close look and identified hazards that could easily harm your family? Even little things, those things we take for granted, can have a magnificent impact if not handled properly. How often do you make the time to teach your children about proper tool use or safe storage? Teaching children about safe behavior early in life establishes good habits for their future. Making time to intentionally talk about home safety could make all the difference.

Live safe and make it a great week ~


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