Top 25 Safety Articles of the Week: March 8

fire rope ladder

Something this simple can save your family’s lives

It’s the little things in life, right? And while the phrase usually refers to life’s simple pleasures, “little things” can really be a lot of things. Like an inexpensive, compact fire ladder that saves a man’s life as he flees from a burning building.

Yes, it is the little things in life – little things that allow us to continue enjoying life. Safety measures are so important, not as a way to incite paranoia or fear but as prevention. We’ve all heard the maxim, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. So this week, we’re focusing on not just the latest safety news but also on the latest ways to prevent data fraud, childhood illness, and more. Be safe!

Home Safety

  1. Lauren of Safety Source, the blog for the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), shares with us a new tip sheet on outdoor electrical safety.
  2. If I haven’t yet convinced you of the importance of a fire safety plan, then you have to read this week’s story from John of the Culture of Safety on how a fire ladder saved a man’s life.

Family & Child Safety

  1. The Kids With Food Allergies Foundation shares evidence that certain airborne chemicals have been linked to immunoglobulin E (IgE) and asthma.
  2. The Huff Post and Moms Rising question the presence of questionably effective, possibly dangerous chemical flame retardants in kids’ products, like nap mats and pajamas.
  3. If you worry about your young driver acting irresponsibly in the car, KidSafe this week featured a new invention that stops teens from texting while driving. (I wish I could install in on every adult I ever pass while driving!)
  4. Tim from uKnowKids does it again, this time offering up some valuable info that is also heartwarming: check out his roundup of current anti-bullying and anti-cyberbullying movements around the U.S. 
  5. Alison the SafetyMom hits the nail on the head with this week’s post, titled with the self-explanatory With Parenting Styles, One Size Does Not Fit All. You got that right!
  6. Free Range Mom Lenore always brings us the latest on all things preventing kids from being kids, and this week she has some uplifting news: a public call to ditch the “misguided security blanket” afforded by helicopter parenting policies, and focus on the real problem: red tape and lawsuits.
  7. Pets are important members of the family, but we don’t always apply the same precautions to our furry friends as we do to our kids. Jim Tedford, Director of Animal Welfare Initiatives and Alliances, gives us all the details on pet-proofing to prevent poisoning.
  8. And speaking of your four-legged family members, Natalie Lester, a PetSafe Brand Communications Specialist, shows us how one door + one containment system can = independence for your pup.

Mobile & Cyber Safety

  1. Last Watchdog Byron reminds us that being on a smartphone or tablet does not make us invulnerable to data stealing, especially with the latest scams that have you clicking on links you never intended.
  2. Brian of Krebs on Security warns that suspicious activity this week prompted a password reset for all Evernote users, while Oracle’s Java also issued its third critical security update in a month.
  3. If you’ve ever been interested in the online dating scene, don’t miss this article from Safe Kids (they care about parents’ safety, too!) on online dating safety tips.
  4. Tim, of uKnowKids, clues us in to the latest sex trafficking scheme – using Facebook to find victims – and how you can protect your kids.
  5. If you’ve ever lost or had your smartphone stolen, Scott from A Silver Lining reminds us that these little touch-screens are actually mini-computers – and need to be treated as serious security risks.
  6. David of We Live Security has some excellent points on how hundreds of thousands of Facebook likes can be deceptive (and completely wrong). The article reminds me of what my mom always asked: If all your friends jumped off a bridge, would you do it too?
  7. Lisa, of Sophos Naked Security, peels apart the onion layers (it’ll certainly make you cry) of the latest debit-card fraud – scammers pretending to protect your from scammers.

Senior Safety

  1. Ryan of Inside Elder Care reminds us to really dig into the policies of our parents’ or other loved ones’ assisted living or nursing care communities. What will happen in an emergency? Will community staff perform CPR?
  2. Susan at Help! Aging Parents gives us some pointers on helping our parents make the best decisions for their health, like whether they should get life-changing surgeries.
  3. The Aging Wisely blog develops a debate about the work-family balance, and how it applies to work-at-homers and eldercare.
  4. Safety Mom Alison features a really cool infographic on the “communication lifeline” – the relationship between caregiver and seniors. Alison is also hosting a Twitter party on March 13 to discuss signs your aging parents need help.

Work Safety

  1. In the U.S., construction mishaps account for 17 percent of all work-related accidents. Carl at Blog4Safety provides 5 tips for a safer construction workplace.
  2. Blog4Safety gives us another good one on how to identify the dangers of asbestos.
  3. And speaking of creating a safer workplace, Kevin from the Safety at Work Blog discusses the lack of a “safety culture” for employers and employees.
  4. If you’re in the U.S., your time is going to change this weekend. Roy at The Society for Human Resource Management reminds us all to be careful that sleep deprivation doesn’t lead to workplace accidents next week.

Top 25 Family Safety Articles of the Week: Feb 15, 2013

protect your children from cyberbullying

Cyberbullying: A very real concern

Happy belated Valentine’s Day! I hope you had an enjoyable celebration with your family. It gets you thinking though, doesn’t it? Thinking about how much you love and appreciate them, and how much you care about their safety. That’s what it does for me. Every time I hug my little boy and every time my husband smiles at me over dinner, I think about how much I love these two people.

We’ll be doing these weekly roundups a little differently from now on. I hope you like it. Instead of hitting on just a handful of the week’s best posts, I’ll be highlighting the past seven days of safety news, superior blogging, important recalls, and other safety & security tidbits that make my radar. As always, you are welcome to leave suggestions to other recent news and interesting info in the comments.

Home Safety

  1. Carbon monoxide is a silent killer, and fire a serious hazard, especially in the winter months when we’re burning fuel. After deaths in Chicago, Philadelphia, and Portsmouth, VA, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) is reminding you to be safe this season and check your home heating.
  2. Home safety devices are only as good as their last check. Tiffany at No Ordinary Homestead has some great tips on when to check each device, from smoke alarms to your outdoor barbecue.
  3. Did you know that most heat (thermal) burns in children under 14 are due to contact with household appliances, like room heaters, curling irons, and range tops? Marianne from the Child Safety Blog reminds us how to keep our homes burn-safe by taking measures to avoid scalding injuries, kitchen accidents, and other events that can result in serious burns.
  4. Gun safety is the talk of the Senate, where a bipartisan group of senators is working on legislation to require more detailed background checks on gun buyers. Jennifer Steinhauer blogs for the New York Times on how senators hope to strike a balance between advocates for gun control and proponents of the right to bear arms. The legislation may incorporated into the Chief Senate bill on gun safety.
  5. Though many parents are unaware, window blind cords are a serious home safety hazards when you have young children. If you haven’t budgeted for cordless blinds or curtains, you can follow Blind Plymouth’s tips on how to keep babies, toddlers and other little ones safe around cords.
  6. Have you ever wondered about the history of home security? What did the ancient Romans do? The American colonists? Get these answers and more at the Daily Caller.
  7. If the history of home security isn’t amusing enough, Naked Security bring us this week’s real, live zombie attack. Well, sort of. It’s like War of the Worlds in the new millennium – and an excellent lesson in how dangerous hackers can be. It’s humorous in hindsight, but maybe not if you were watching the news in Montana this week!

Family & Child Safety

  1. Cyberbullying gets a lot of press, but it’s not the only bullying threat children and teenagers face. Pat Brownlee guests on Blog4Safety about seven types of childhood bullying highlights some of the most vicious and insidious ways others can undermine your children’s self-esteem, confidence and happiness.
  2. That’s not to say cyberbullying isn’t a serious problem, because it is. Check out Tim Woda’s story on uKnowKids about how even a former Green Bay Packers cheerleader can be the victim of online cruelty. Then grab his eBook, “10 Essential Things Every Parent Needs to Know About Cyberbullying.”
  3. I love Free Range Kids; Lenore is always a breath of fresh air. This week, she brings to our attention a recent decision to sell all four Iowa Girl Scout camp properties. The reason: they’re too rustic for today’s kids. I tend to agree with Lenore here, that getting away from the WiFi connection and television and heck, even hot showers, is a character-building experience – and one that Girl Scouts would still benefit from. What do you think?
  4. Do you understand the perils of sexting, and how they could affect your preteen or teen? Tim, again from uKnowKids, reminds us to explain the consequences – short- and long-term – to our children, so they understand just how serious sexting can be. Despite what their friends say.
  5. And if you don’t think that talking to kids doesn’t help, check out what Daniel Kent has to say about the effectiveness of online safety presentations.
  6. Safety Mom hit us this week with some great tips on how to keep seniors safe during the winter. This is particularly important if your parents or other seniors live alone, especially in the wake of such a serious winter storm as Nemo was.
  7. KidSafe brings us recent research suggesting that the current vaccine timetable – and vaccines themselves – are safe. (Let’s not start a vaccine debate. If you’re interested, read it; if not, take a pass.)
  8. I really enjoyed Bryan’s post about developing family “core values” – and his link to a great WSJ article on running your family like a business. That’s some great food for thought.
  9. Consumer Reports says that deadly infections are too common in hospitals. And get ready for brain shock: not only are hospital-acquired infections deadly, but they’re estimated to cost about $45 billion in additional healthcare every year.
  10. When you’re a kid, one of the best things about the winter is playing in the snow. Melissa gives us some good tips for keeping your kids safe while they play on their snow day.

Online Safety

  1. Hands-down, the top news item in online safety this week is President Obama’s cybersecurity executive order. These measures have potentially serious implications for our security, and ZDNet lets you in on what you need to know about the President’s cybersecurity order.
  2. Some cybersecurity experts seem to have reacted positively (via The Last Watchdog) to President Obama’s order, while others label it as least as better than the alternatives (Andy Greenberg, Forbes Staff). Others believe the plan reaches too far (Jody Westby, Forbes Contributor). Where do you fall?
  3. Heads up: KrebsonSecurity warned us that Adobe announced two security flaws this week. Update your Flash players!
  4. And speaking of security issues, TechCrunch clues us in that iPhones running iOS 6.1 have been discovered vulnerable to hacking into photos, email, apps, messages and FaceTime.
  5. Remember the email chain letters from back in the day? You remember – the ones that had to be sent on or the world would end? David Harley talks about online hoaxes of today, which are couched in more realistic threats like malware and other cyber enemies.

Work Safety

  1. If you live in Michigan and work in construction or general industry, Peoples World wants you know that Gov. Rick Snyder just signed two bills into law on December 20 that will affect (weaken) your safety at work.
  2. The New York Times and the Federal Reserve have recently admitted to cyber attacks. According to The Last Watchdog, your company might respond by instituting new steps to detect and deter online intruders to your work files.
  3. Security is of particular concern in a Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) workplace. TechRepublic provides tips on how keep your network, data and employee devices safe from cyber harm.