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Prevention better than cure

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As Head of Mediclinic Limpopo’s emergency unit, Victor Loftie-Eaton sees many injuries and deaths that could have been prevented.
“Too many people die or are seriously injured every day, due to unnecessary accidents on the road, at the work place or at home,” he says.
Loftie-Eaton offers his top tips on how to stay safe.
On the road:
Every single person in a car should wear seatbelts. Babies and young children should be secured in proper South African Bureau of Standards (SABS)approved car seats
Speed kills! It is not how well you drive when exceeding the speed limit, but about how effectively you can reduce speed in an emergency
Be aware of your surroundings including pedestrians, cyclists, motorcyclists, children, stray animals and poor road conditions
Never drive under the influence of alcohol or drugs as this will impair your judgement
Avoid distractions like talking on the phone, texting and loud music. Keep children happy on the back seat so as to avoid this distraction
Ensure your vehicle is roadworthy and safe to drive
Never drive when angry, sick or tired
Never ride on the back of a bakkie or truck. Employers who transport workers must use minibuses or other safe transport vehicles
At the work place:
Wear all the necessary protective gear appropriate for your work situation
Ensure proper training of all workers in the use of mechanical equipment as well as chemicals and poisons
Inspect tools, vehicles, storage rooms and safety equipment regularly
Complete frequent safety drills and follow all safety protocols
Avoid workers’ fatigue as this will lead to a lack of concentration and accidents
At home:
Safely store and lock up all chemicals, poisons and medications
Ensure pools, open holes, pit toilets and ponds are properly covered and fenced off
Teach children to respect animals and take care when in the presence of a potentially dangerous animal
Cover plug sockets and keep electrical wires out of harm’s way
Be aware of all small children and pets when parking or moving a vehicle; they may not be visible in the rear view mirror
Be careful when using a lawnmower or other garden power tools. Flying stones can cause terrible injury
Children should wear SABS approved helmets when riding their bicycles
Lock up firearms and dangerous weapons

MARKI FRANKEN
>>[email protected]