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Is My Daycare a High Risk Zone? What to look for

by Nickey on April 8, 2013

Parents today face certain challenges concerning the care of their children while they are at work. Finding a suitable day care facility involves a great deal of research. Even afterward, there are safety hazards that all parents should look out for in these environments, such as those below. 

Safety Hazards

The way that a facility looks on the outside and inside can be a good indicator of the overall level of professionalism to be found at the day care center. For example, watch for:

1. Shabby or unsafe stairways
2. Broken gates (both in and outside)
3. Unprotected electrical outlets
4.  Electrical outlets close to sinks and water supplies
5. Flammable or combustible materials
6. Unlocked water heater or furnace closets
7. Dead or decaying trees near play ground

Facility Equipment

The state of toys, playground and other equipment should be cared for to assure that children playing with and on these items are safe. Ones of particular concern that typically go unnoticed are:

1. Outdated or old seating and furniture
2. Worn and dirty toys
3. Broken, worn or outdated playground equipment
4. Non-age appropriate toys
5. Toxic art supplies like paints, markers, clay and inks
6. Plastic bags within children’s reach
7. Diapering areas too close to play areas

Activities

Make s that there is adequate staff available to handle the number of children present. Observe the atmosphere. If it seems overly hectic or unruly, there is a good chance that safety hazards are present. Activities that take place at the day care center should be safely executed. For example, children and staff should not be eating while using art materials or at any time when food could become contaminated. Charlotte attorneys, Auger & Auger state “the number of children in daycare has risen in Charlotte and NC the last decade. With this increase comes an increase in the number of daycares and injuries that occur whether due to lack of supervision or improper play equipment.” Thus, it is important for parents, guardians and loved ones to be aware and address any concerns.

Detecting Health Risks 

Any child at a day care center or school can become particularly susceptible to illnesses that get passed between children easily. For example, colds, flu, pink eye and head lice. When arriving and before leaving a day care facility, observe the children and staff to see if there are indications of illness. Examine the child’s head for lice weekly. If the child is ill, make arrangements to keep him or her home or cared for elsewhere. When children at a facility appear sick much of the time, this is an indication that it is time to review the facility thoroughly to ensure that adequate precautions are being taken.

Handling Deficiencies

Whenever a parent notices a hazard of any type, the issue should be taken up with the facility manager immediately. Document all instances of every concern with time, place, form and event, including conversations with staff and what attempts were made at resolving issues. Parents who find that their concerns are not addressed to their satisfaction should make arrangements to place their children at a different facility. One of the main reasons for this is that leaving hazards left to chance can result in unnecessary illness and injury for a child.

Unfortunately, some of these circumstances can be long lasting, permanent or even fatal. Also, when one child is exposed – so are all of the other children. If severe injuries or illness should occur, the child should receive immediate medical attention. If there is any suspicion of negligence, whether intentional or accidental, contact a personal injury lawyer to discuss options to resolve any conflicts. This will ensure that all medical and other costs associated with illnesses and injuries are fully covered.

Researcher and writer Nickey Williams writes this article to create daycare safety awareness. There are many parents out there who were under the impression that their child was in a safe place, only to receive a shocking phone call stating that their child was injured and in route to the hospital. Charlotte NC, Attorneys Auger & Auger are knowledgeable in all matters involving daycare negligence. They provide excellent legal representation to victims of personal injury.

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