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University of Missouri Health Care News Releases
Annual Safe Kids Day debuts in new location at Columbia Regional Hospital (AUDIO AVAILABLE)

June 7, 2010                                                                              Contact: Matt Splett
                                                                                                      Media Coordinator
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                                    (573) 882-5663

COLUMBIA, Mo. — Safe Kids Columbia hosted its annual injury prevention and safety outreach event for parents and children on Saturday, June 5, at Columbia Regional Hospital, 404 Keene Street in Columbia, Mo.

This year marked the first time the annual event has been held at the Columbia Regional Hospital. Last year, more than 600 people attended Safe Kids Day at the Hearnes Center on the University of Missouri campus.

“Safe Kids Columbia and MU Children’s Hospital have partnered for years in preventing childhood injuries and promoting good safety practices with children,” said Lezlie Dahlke, R.N. Safe Kids Columbia coordinator and trauma outreach coordinator at University of Missouri Health Care. “With Children’s Hospital’s upcoming move, Columbia Regional Hospital provided an ideal location to host Safe Kids Day and introduce our community to the new Children’s Hospital location and the importance of preventing unintentional injury in children.”

According to Safe Kids Worldwide, unintentional injury is the No. 1 killer of children ages 1-14 in the United States. Many of these injuries occur as the result of motor vehicle crashes, drowning, residential fires, suffocation or pedestrian accidents. An estimated 90 percent of these injuries and deaths are preventable.

“We all have this feeling of invincibility, that nothing bad could ever happen to us, but tragedy does happen when we least expect it,” said Dahlke. “If you make a habit of injury prevention every day, like buckling everyone’s seatbelt every time you get in a car, you create a much higher level of protection in the event of an accident.”

As the lead organization for Safe Kids Columbia, University of Missouri Health Care encourages parents and children to attend Safe Kids Day to learn good safety habits through fun, interactive activities. More than 30 community partner agencies will be on hand to teach children and families ways to avoid unintentional injuries through safety demonstrations, games and educational booths. Parents will also have an opportunity to ask questions of these safety experts.

A few of the safety topics highlighted at Safe Kids Day included bicycle safety and how to properly fit a bicycle helmet, home and fire safety, safety in and around water, and why a child should never be left alone in a vehicle. Demonstrations showed parents and children how to prevent vehicle backover accidents and trunk entrapment, while trained safety technicians demonstrated a vehicle safety belt fit test parents should use to decide if their child is ready to move out of a booster seat.

Safe Kids Day was free and open to the public. For more information on the event or Safe Kids Columbia, contact Lezlie Dahlke at (573) 884-6381 or e-mail coordinator@SafeKidsColumbia.org.

Audio Files

Lezlie Dahlke, trauma outreach coordinator for MU Health Care and Safe Kids Columbia coordinator

What is the mission of Safe Kids Columbia? MP3 WAV
Activities planned for Safe Kids Day MP3 WAV
What will parents take away from Safe Kids Day? MP3 WAV

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