Winter is a wonderful time to be outdoors. Despite the frosty air and slippery ground, people still find a way to have fun in it. Do you remember you first memory of experiencing snow?
There are many things your family can do outdoors in winter. Some of these include engaging in winter sports, playing snow games or just building a snowman in your yard. But before you head out to the chilly outdoors, here are some snow safety tips.
PREPARING FOR SNOW
- Dress up your children properly for the cold weather. Use layers of clothing to keep their body warm.
- Cover their exposed skin with accessories such as gloves, hats and scarves to prevent frostbite or other cold-related complications. Bring extra in case the first ones get wet.
- 85% of the harmful UV rays of the sun are reflected by snow, so apply sunscreen on your child’s exposed skin before sending him outdoors.
- A baby should be in a snowsuit and not exposed too long outdoors. Constantly check the baby’s clothing – immediately change damp ones to avoid hypothermia.
- Flat-soled footwear are not recommended for walking on snow. Snow-safe shoes and boots should be worn by children for better traction on slippery ice.
- If your child complains about numb fingers, ears or nose, bring him indoors right away to warm up.
- Clear your child’s play area from thick snow. Look out for snow piling up on trees and other high areas that may fall on your kid’s head. Let them stay indoors when clearing snow with a shovel or from the roof.
- Don’t use a snow blower in the presence of a child. If it gets jammed, use a solid object instead of your hands to clear it. Its powerful motor and blades can cause serious injury when touched.
- When snow blowing, aim the discharge chute away from passing people, vehicles and your child’s play area.
- Never leave a running snow blower unattended. Turn off the motor and pull the plug when you need to be away even just of a few minutes.
PLAYING IN SNOW
- Advice the children not to eat or taste snow from the ground. Kids from warmer states who experience snow for the first time may get too excited and try to do this. Outdoor snow may contain disease-causing impurities.
- Only allow your kids to sled during daytime and only in hills away from traffic. Supervise small children and make sure they only sled on snowy grounds, not on icy ones.
- Choose safe spots like parks or open fields for your kids’ play area. Stay away from frozen lakes or ponds because you’ll never know where there’s thin ice.
- Bring your family to ice skate or play hockey in a rink instead of a frozen lake. Make sure their skates are properly fitted and the blades are covered when not in use.
- Get your child to wear protective gear when playing snow sports. Skiing, snowboarding and other ice sports are high risk activities for head trauma, among others injuries.
Although not all US cities experience snowfall in winter, it’s still good to keep these tips in mind in case your family decides to visit an icy state for a white holiday.