Child Safety Fireplace
The light and brilliance of the flames from a fireplace are like nothing a child has ever seen. There is always the impulse to reach for the flames and touch them, but the consequences can be very serious. There are many cases of severe injuries to children by burning and parents or caregivers must ensure a child safety fireplace is set up in the home.
You can childproof your fireplace by using a hearth gate or a safety guard in front of your fireplace which will create a barrier between your child and both the hot hearth and fire. These are available at affordable prices and are easy to install. Even with these in place, there are a number of things you will need to know about how to keep your child away from the fire and create the best child safety fireplace.
A safety gate or hearth barrier is only the beginning~Knowing that a gate between your child and the fireplace is not enough to protect the child adequately and we need to also take other measures of making the fireplace safe
Do not let your children play too close to the fireplace~Teach your child to keep their distance from the fire because accidents can still happen even with a gate in place. Arrange your living room such that the kids’ play area is as far away as possible from the fireplace. Teaching your child respect and having a ‘no tolerance’ policy regarding fire safety will develop good life-long habits concerning areas with a fire.
Take extra precaution if yours is a gas fireplace~Keep the gas switch out of your child’s reach, and only light the fire when your child is not nearby. This is because gas fireplaces catch on very fast, and you will need to regulate the heat to prevent it from flaring up. Gas fires also burn very quickly, and if your child gets into contact with it, they may get a severe burn very fast.
Combine a hearth gate and a hearth guard for maximum safety~Depending on the design of your fireplace, you may find that you will be in need of both a protective barrier for your child as well as protection from the sharp edges of your fireplace hearth. On the other hand, a hearth guard alone will not adequately protect your child from the fire because many can be easy to climb over. A hearth gate and a fireplace barrier should be two top priorities for your child’s safety.
Carbon monoxide detectors should accompany your fireplace~You may have the safety gate in place, but if the fireplace is not burning correctly or if your home is not adequately ventilated, the carbon monoxide fumes produced can be as great a threat to your family as the fire itself. A carbon monoxide detector will alert you when the carbon monoxide is being produced from the fireplace so that you can make the right adjustments or even turn off the fire and open the windows. This is an important aspect of a child safety fireplace.
Make sure that your child’s toys are not near the fireplace~Toys left around in the living room may end up getting kicked about and land in the vicinity of the fireplace. These should be collected after playtime ends because they will attract your child to the fireplace even if unknowingly. Teach your child to tidy up after themselves to minimize the chances of this happening.
Safety gates should be slow to heat up~You do not want your barrier to be as hot as the fire itself, or made of flammable materials. Place the gate far enough from the fire to reduce the rate of the barrier itself heating up, or have it insulated with heat-proof materials. It should be safe for both yourself and your child to touch.
Keep combustible items away from the fireplace~Papers, kindling, draperies and such should be as far from the fireplace as possible. In the same regard, keep all equipment used in the fireplace away from it because they will attract the child to them. Children might use the fireplace accessories and imitate what they see the adults doing, which is extremely dangerous thus must be considered when trying to create a child safety fireplace.