Winter Safety in Child Care Programs

It's cold outside! In the winter time, we have the need to warm up our child care centers and child care homes as much as possible. However, certain items are prohibited in child care centers to ensure the safety of the children and staff inside of the buildings. In Texas, the Minimum Standards, Standard 746.5501 Heating Devices, is very clear about the procedures child care centers must adhere to, to ensure that heating devices do not present hazards to children. 

Here are a few:

1.) Open flame heaters (heaters where the flame cam be easily touched or accessed) are prohibited. 

2.) Space heaters must be enclosed and have the seal of approval of a United States test laboratory or be approved by the state or local fire marshal 

3.) Liquid fuel heaters are prohibited. 

4.) Gas appliances must have metal tubing and connections must be in good repair and free from leaks.

5.) All fireplaces, wood-burning stoves, or space heaters must have a screen or guard with sufficient strength to prevent children from falling into the fire or against the stove or heater. 

For more information on steps you can take to stay safe, visit HHS Child Care Licensing Minimum Standards.