Gravity Always Wins
Amy Pistone, mother of three: "My 12-month-old daughter pulled the cord of my curling iron and it fell down on her bare foot, giving her a pretty good burn."
Tip: Hastings says, "Never leave any electric appliance plugged in without supervision. Not only are burns a danger, but with water in bathrooms, there is a significant electrocution risk."
Donald Costa, father of six: "I'm missing the first inch of my index finger because I stuck it in a fan as a child. Now I'm diligent about keeping fans out of reach and unplugging the paper shredder in the office unless I'm actually using it at the moment."
Tip: The seemingly small paper shredder opening can catch tiny fingers, long hair, loose clothing, and jewelry, causing a strangulation risk.
Lacey Griffin, mother of two: "I thought getting an exercise bike for our home was a great way to lose the baby fat, but it actually earned us a trip to the hospital when my daughter played with the pedals and caught her fingers in the moving gears.
Tip: Keep all home exercise equipment locked up. "Treadmills cause falls, burns, and fingers trapped between the belt and machine. Stair steppers pose fall risks and jump ropes are a strangulation hazard," warns Hastings.
Heather Cornett, mother of two: "We were at Disney World when my 1-year-old son climbed out of a high chair and fell, hitting himself right on the top of the head. I was so freaked out that we had paramedics come check him out. He turned out to be fine."
Tip: Hastings says that children who aren't even walking yet can still climb out of a high chair or slip down through the leg holes, so always strap kids in.
Beth Nuroff, mother of three: "My 3-year-old daughter liked to climb in her little brother's crib to play with him when he woke up or just climb in there to pretend she was a baby. But it's a lot easier to get into than out of, which she learned one day when she fell out and broke her wrist."
Tip: A crib is designed for a sleeping infant rather than a rambunctious toddler, and a big kid bouncing on the crib mattress with a baby next to him is a recipe for disaster.