The weather has definitely made a great improvement over the last couple of weeks and let's hope it continues right into half-term and beyond. Here’s our definitive guide to summer safety.

Home safety

Open windows

If you’ve got young children, keep low furniture away from windows so that they can’t climb up and fall out – even on the ground floor. It’s a good idea to install window catches (to limit how far they can open) and locks if you can.

Garden safety

If you have a garden, remember that babies and toddlers can drown in as little as 5cm (2”) of water, so supervision around ponds and paddling pools is essential. It’s a very good idea to get into the habit of emptying paddling pools when young children have finished playing in them.

Think about your neighbours’ gardens too – young children can wander off into them and drown in garden ponds, even if you don’t think they have access.


A barbecue can stay hot enough to cause a serious contact burn for a long time after they’ve been used (and the barbecue chef has long abandoned it to relax!).  All barbecues produce carbon monoxidewhich is fine outdoors, but is deadly poisonous in an enclosed space. Never take a lit or smouldering one inside a house, tent, caravan, or boat.

Sun safety

Out in the sun? Sunburn doesn't often cause serious accidental injury to children. But it's important to protect children from sunburn due to the long-term damage it can cause.

Leisure safety

Sadly, each year there are avoidable drowning incidents during the summer months. It’s not just young children at risk. Older children and teenagers who are competent swimmers can still get into trouble and be at risk of drowning.

In the UK, incidents of drowning from swimming in inland water are more common than those in the sea. Abroad, in the past six years, 30 children from the UK have drowned whilst on holiday.

Don’t assume hotel pools have lifeguards – provision and legislation varies, and lifeguards may have other duties. Also don’t assume that your child will shout or scream if they’re in trouble. Drowning happens silently.

Safe outdoor swimming

The Outdoor Swimming Society has advice on safe outdoor swimming and the RNLI has advice on being safe on the beach and in the sea

Holiday lets and hotels

It might sound obvious, but remember to exercise the same caution in holiday accommodation that you do at home.

  • Keep medicines and cleaning things out of children’s reach.
  • Move furniture away from windows, and if your let or hotel room has a balcony, ensure young children are supervised.
  • Tie blind cords out of reach of young children.
  • Children under six shouldn’t sleep on the top bunk of a bunk bed.
  • Check the smoke alarms are working when you arrive. We also highly recommend an audible carbon monoxide alarm.

Camping, caravanning, motor homes, camper vans and boats

Already this year there have been a number of carbon monoxide (CO) deaths related to caravans and boats. If accommodation has a fuel-burning appliance, it’s important to get it serviced regularly and, have an audible carbon monoxide alarm. Again, if you’re renting, take one along with you.

NEVER take a lit barbecue or disposable barbecue into a caravan, boat, motor home or any enclosed space – not even a tent. Tents might seem well ventilated, but they’re not.

Don't be caught off guard

One of the biggest risk factors when it comes to holiday safety is that parents are off-guard. None of the advice we give is onerous, just a few simple checks and precautions. Enjoy the summer weather!

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Child Safety Week is back from 4th-10th June.

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