Spring cleaning safety tips

From clearing out eavestroughs to firing up the BBQ, it’s finally spring cleaning season! Just make sure to avoid any potential hazards that might result in a visit to the emergency room. Joanne Banfield, Manager of Trauma Injury Prevention at Sunnybrook, gives her top picks for keeping things clean and safe.

Ladders. When cleaning out eavestroughs, place ladders on solid footing and have a spotter. Avoid overextending your reach by taking the time to move the ladder into a proper position. If you need any tools for the job you are doing, have them close at hand and easy to reach.

Backyards. Do a quick walk through your yard to check for stones, debris or garbage that may have accumulated over the winter. Severe injuries can result from stepping on objects or hitting them with your lawnmower, so make sure your grass and walkways are clear.

BBQs. Before turning on your grill, examine all the components to make sure they haven’t been broken or damaged during the winter. Don’t forget to check for small animals like mice, which can block gas lines and cause an explosion if turned on. Thoroughly clean all grilling surfaces before placing food on them.

Medicine cabinet. Spring is the perfect time to give your medicine cabinet a once over. Dispose of any expired or unneeded medications at a pharmacy with a proper take back program. Never pour medications down the sink or flush them down the toilet.

Wear protection in the grass. Always use gloves when removing any debris from around your property, which may include moving dead animals or using any chemical cleaners. Handling objects can result in cuts, burns or infection, so protect yourself from looming hazards. Use safety glasses and closed toed shoes when using a lawnmower or trimmer.

Air it out. If cleaning indoors, try to opt for natural cleaners like vinegar, water and baking soda. Not only are they effective at removing dirt and cleaning windows, but they won’t expose you to potentially harmful chemicals. If stronger chemical cleaners are needed, keep children away and open windows to keep the room well ventilated.

Get your shots. You can get a tetanus infection from the soil when gardening or if you cut yourself on contaminated objects. Adults require a tetanus booster every ten years, so make sure you are up to date!

About the author

Monica Matys

Monica Matys is a Communications Advisor at Sunnybrook.

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