The cold weather in Wyoming does little to keep winter sports enthusiasts inside – especially children.  Children ages 14 and under are at a high risk for winter sports injuries.  Safe Kids of Central Wyoming along with Kohl's are taking steps to keep kids safe on Mar. 2, 2013 for Winter Safety Day at Hogadon Ski Area.

Safe Kids of Central Wyoming will be providing helmets to children for skiing/snowboarding and teach parents and children how to create a safe environment to ensure every child is safe when participating in winter sports.  Kohl's is sponsoring the event on Mar. 2, 2013 at Hogadon Ski Area.  The event will run 9:00 a.m.-11:30 a.m and lessons are available that day by calling 235-8499.  A chance will be provided for those who cannot afford to "Learn to Ski/Snowboard."

Here are useful tips to keep children safe when doing outdoor activities this winter:

Sledding:  Kids can suffer serious head injuries from sledding, and should always wear a helmet. When sledding, do not go down a hill head-first. Sit up, face forward, use a clear, safe path and make sure an adult is supervising. A good sledding hill does not lead to a street, a body of water or a crowded gathering place. In addition, remember to inspect sleds regularly for worn, damaged or loose parts that could break or snag at high speed.

Snowmobiles:  Children under 6 should not be riding a snowmobile and no one under 16 should drive one. All snowmobile drivers and passengers should be wearing helmets designed for high-speed motor sports - a bike helmet isn’t sufficient for a four-wheeled motorcycle that can go up to 90 miles per hour.

Ice and Hockey:  Helmets are a must for ice hockey, along with mouth guards, knee pads and elbow, shoulder and shin protection. If skating or playing, teach kids how to protect themselves if they fall through ice. Remind them to stretch their arms out wide and kick as if swimming, shout for help, and try to crawl backward onto solid ice.  This particular safety tip will be featured at Safe Kids Swim Morn on January 21st, 10:00 a.m. – noon at the Casper Aquatic Center.  Admission is free.

General:  Always wear sport-specific, properly fitting safety gear when participating in winter sports activities. Since proper equipment fit and maintenance are important for safety, bring your child along when shopping for skates, helmets, boots, etc.

  • Dress in layers and wear warm, close-fitting clothes. Make sure that long scarves are tucked in so they don’t get entangled in lifts, ski poles or other equipment.
  • Stay hydrated and wears sunscreen with a rating of SPF 15 or higher.

If children become distracted, irritable, or begin to hyperventilate, they may be suffering from hypothermia or altitude sickness, or are too tired to participate safely in winter sports. They should go indoors, rest and warm up.