Babyproofing Your Home: Kitchen
- Stay in the kitchen while you're heating food. Cooking was the leading cause of fire injuries in 2005, the most recent year for which there are statistics. Staying near the stove while the burners are on means you can attack a fire with a fire extinguisher and call 911 immediately if needed. Also, keep all your smoke alarms in working order.
- Use stove-knob covers to keep your child from turning the burners off and on.
- Secure the trash can. Most kids go through a phase of being fascinated with garbage. It's mostly just a nuisance, but it can be dangerous if your child takes things out and finds, for instance, a sharp metal lid. Look for a childproof latch, keep the garbage in a locked cabinet, or put the can outdoors (such as on a porch off the kitchen).
- Don't store cleaners under the sink. Keep them in a higher cabinet with a lock, separate from food. Lock up matches too.
- Place baby's seat on the floor only. Your instinct may be to put a bouncer, car seat, or foam seat at eye level (say, on a counter), but that means risking a bad fall.
- Use caution with your morning coffee; don't carry a hot drink and your baby at the same time.
- Letting kids play with pots and pans is free entertainment, sure, but they're more likely to reach for a pot of boiling water if they used the pot as a drum yesterday. It's better to keep a few real toys in the kitchen.