Top 10 Safest Cities for Kids

Filed under: In The News, Research Reveals: Toddlers & Preschoolers, Research Reveals: Big Kids

Safest Cities for Kids

Did your city make the list? Credit: Corbis

Accidents happen, especially when kids are involved. But parents seeking the best ways to stave off the risky business of playing can get help from a new study that pinpoints the top cities in America taking steps to prevent serious accidents among the tot and grade school crowd.

Boston, Columbus, Ohio, and Louisville, Ky. are leading the way with programs aimed at reducing the risk of fire deaths, pedestrian accidents and other mishaps that contribute to the estimated 14 million potentially disabling, unintentional injuries that children sustain each year, Reuters reports. Minneapolis, New York, Portland, Ore., San Francisco, Seattle, Tampa, Fla., and Virginia Beach, Va., also make the top 10 list of the "Safest Cities for Families with Young Children."

"It's clear that most cities are doing great things to improve safety at home and in the community," says Gus Schaefer of Underwriters Laboratories (UL), the Northbrook, Ill.-based independent safety certification provider that commissioned the research, in a release.

The study was commissioned to look at best safety practices for cities and outline tips to help parents reduce preventable accidents, he says. The study looked at 25 safety criteria including proximity of hospitals, bike helmet laws and how quickly local fire departments respond to determine the safest cities for young children.

Some of the highlights of the study:

  • Boston: Most hospitals per capita
  • Portland: Lowest drowning rate and good air quality
  • Virginia Beach: Scored high for a seat belt law that requires passengers under 18 to wear them, even if they are in the back seat
  • New York: Firefighters were the fastest responders to emergencies
More good news: Although the study names only the top 10 safest cities for families with young children, UL notes that almost all 50 cities had strong safety regulations in place related to several of the criteria.

Also, 47 out of 50 cities had some nonsmoking legislation and an equal number required carbon monoxide alarms.

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Start by teaching him that it is safe to do so.