Drowning, burns, heat stroke: how to protect children from summer accidents?

Summer is synonymous with relaxation. However, when you have young children, vigilance must remain in place combined with some targeted preventative measures. To avoid the many accidents in everyday life, which especially threaten children under 6 years.

Daily life accidents are the most common cause of death in children aged 1 to 4 years. This age group is actually particularly fragile in the face of several daily dangers, some of which occur more frequently during the summer. This is the case with barbecue burns, drownings and dog bites or even insect bites.


“In France, 1,000 children are hospitalized every year due to a burn,” says the CHU in Nantes. Meals on the grill are situations at significant risk to the youngest, “because children [sont] often fascinated by fire.

How to prevent? It is important to ensure that no child can approach within 5 meters of the grill or plancha. For this, it is ideal that it is under the supervision of a single adult during cooking. Also keep in mind that a grill stays warm for several hours after it has been turned off. Do not let children play alone in the garden during this cooling time.


Water can also be a dangerous element for the youngest. Drowning is thus the second leading cause of accidental death among young children in France. Before you know how to swim – that is, generally before the age of 6 – “any water point, swimming pool, sea, well, cistern, water recycling barrel, laundry, small ornamental pond, pond, drinking trough, septic tank and manure pit poses a permanent potential danger to the little child who discovers these attractive and dangerous areas for him “, warns Nantes University Hospital.

How to prevent? It is imperative that only one adult is responsible for supervising a child at this age when it is near a water point. The adult should bathe with the child when the child is in the water.

The heat stroke

Toddlers are very afraid of heat because their body has a harder time regulating its temperature. Thus, a small child can quickly be affected by heat stroke if it is exposed to high temperature for a long period of time, for example “in an overheated room and without adequate ventilation”. This is especially the case when a baby is placed “in a stroller that is too closed and the hood is up, a small child is left asleep in a vehicle, or even in the absence of ventilation in a car driving in the heat wave”. It also happens that a baby suffers from it if he sleeps “in a room in the attic in the middle of summer or during a nap in the tent”.

How to prevent? Never leave a child alone in a car. Keep your baby hydrated by giving them something to drink regularly, especially when it is hot. Do not let him sleep in a place without ventilation and where the temperature is too high.

Animal hazards

“Animals are the cause of 7% of home accidents,” reports Nantes University Hospital. Among the situations one often encounters: dog bites, because left “freer and more often outside, (children) are more likely to encounter” these animals.

The second danger is associated with bites from bees, wasps or goat hamsters. “In most cases, they are reduced to pain and swelling of the affected part. But for 1% of the population, a wasp or bee sting can be fatal,” emphasizes Nantes University Hospital.

How to prevent? Do not let him play with an animal, even if it belongs to a relative, unattended. Do not let your child walk barefoot on the grass.

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