Fire Department

Posted on: March 7, 2017

Avoid Poison Scares with these 5 Tips

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Potential poisons include more than just insecticides or cleaning supplies – and it’s not just small children who are at risk!

Almost anything can be poisonous if used in the wrong way, in the wrong amount, or by the wrong person. This includes arts and crafts supplies, alcoholic beverages, energy drinks and caffeine, button batteries, herbal remedies, cosmetics and plants.

Only about half of the calls to the nation’s poison centers are about children under 6 years old, which is why the National Poison Prevention Council urges everyone to follow these five poison prevention tips:

  1. BE PREPARED FOR AN EMERGENCY. Save the national Poison Help number in your mobile phone and display it in your home and workplace. The number is 1 (800) 222-1222.
  2. PRACTICE SAFE STORAGE HABITS. Keep potentially poisonous substances in their original packaging, away from the reach and sight of children. This includes all medications and vitamins, tobacco products, cleaning supplies, pesticides and insect repellants, button batteries, cosmetics and hand sanitizers, and any kind of oil or lubricant, including fragrance oils and automotive fluids.
  3. READ AND FOLLOW LABELS AND DIRECTIONS. Make a habit of reviewing any potentially hazardous substance or product prior to use, especially before administering medications. Pay special attention to directions for safe storage and disposal.
  4. DETECT INVISIBLE THREATS. Install carbon monoxide detectors in your home.
  5. PRACTICE FOOD SAFETY. Practice safe food preparation and handling to avoid food poisoning. This includes storing perishable foods at proper temperatures, cooking meats to minimum internal temperatures, and washing hands, utensils and surfaces after handling raw meat. See full list of food safety recommendations.

National Poison Prevention Week is March 19-25. Learn more at

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