Safety

May Run/Wander/Escape.

 

  1. Ensure that all settings i.e. home, school, care providers are aware of the individuals history of running/wandering/escaping and ensure they know what to do in the event that this occurs.

  2. Keep a diary of their behaviours including who, what, where, when.  Understanding the purpose of their running/wandering/escaping may help you to change or reduce it.

  3. The behaviour may be to escape sensory overload.  If the triggers are sensory, carry out an environmental profile – Take notes to figure out what sensory input may be causing them issues and modify the physical environment if appropriate.

  4. Provide a safe space that they can retreat to i.e. a quiet room, tent etc.

  5. They may enjoy the feeling of running.  If this is the case, create safe opportunities during the day that enable them to gain the same sensory input.

  6. Use a Social Story™ to explain how to be safe and the dangers of running/wandering/escaping.

  7. Use visual cards to show ‘Stop’ or ‘wait’ on doors. 

  8. Ensure that they have supervision at all times.

  9. Add locks high up on doors and on windows, if necessary.

  10. Add bells or alarms to doors and windows, if necessary.

  11. Ensure unsafe areas such as ponds/swimming pools have effective barriers around them.

  12. When outdoors, holding hands/reins/safety harness may help stop the running (if appropriate).

  13. If they run/wander/escape regularly a bracelet ID or tracking device may be appropriate.  Give the individual a form of identification with contact names and numbers listed.  Make sure they always wear this identification.

  14. It may be a good idea to create a handout about the individual that you can carry/give to neighbours etc.  This should include contact names and numbers, as well as any other important information about the individual.

  15. If missing, contact the police on 999.  Let the police know their diagnosis, that they no danger perception and any other information that they may need.

 

May have little/no understanding of road safety.

 

  1. Use a Social Story™ to teach the Green Cross Code and the dangers of roads/vehicles.

  2. Use DVDs/Books with their favourite characters to teach the Green Cross Code.

  3. When outdoors, holding hands/reins/safety harness may be appropriate.

May have little/no understanding of water safety.

 

  1. Ensure unsafe water such as ponds/swimming pools have effective barriers around them.

  2. Teaching them how to swim (or swimming lessons), including learning how to swim fully clothed (once they are a competent swimmer).

  3. Only allow them to run the bath under supervision (if appropriate).

  4. Add locks high up on the outside of bathroom doors, if necessary.

  5. Add tap covers, if necessary.

  6. Use a Social Story™ to teach water danger.

 

May have little/no understanding of safety in the home.

 

  1. Furniture – Secure all heavy furniture to the walls with brackets/straps.  This may include TV safety straps.

  2. Avoid placing furniture where they are able to climb onto other furniture (if they are a climber).

  3. Covers for sharp edges on furniture may be appropriate if the individual struggles with motor skills.

  4. Cleaning products/medicines should be stored/locked in a safe place.  It may be appropriate to place them in a locked garage or basement.

  5. Scissors/knives/lighters should be stored out of reach and secure (locked away if necessary).

  6. Electrical sockets and appliances should be made safe.  This may mean having covers for unused electrical sockets, hob/oven knobs and keeping electrical wires covered or out of reach.

  1. Hot water - Only allow them to run the bath under supervision (if appropriate).

  2. Add locks high up on the outside of bathroom doors, if necessary.

  3. Add tap covers, if necessary.

  4. Ensure kettles are out of reach and they are supervised when using them (if appropriate).

  5. Use a Social Story™ to teach safety at home.

 

May have little/no understanding of stranger danger.

 

  1. Use a Social Story™ to teach stranger danger.

  2. Use DVDs/Books with their favourite characters to teach stranger danger.

  3. A Social Skills group can help teach stranger danger.  This may include role play and responding to different situations.

  4. Ensure that they know that anyone they are unfamiliar with is a stranger.

  5. Identify ‘safe’ adults such as Police Officers etc.

  6. Use a Social Story™ to teach rules for walking alone/being at home alone i.e. not speaking to strangers or opening the door to strangers.

May have little/no understanding of car safety.

 

  1. Ensure child door locks are on.

  2. Ensure that they cannot undo their car seat.  If they do manage to get out of their car seat, pull off the road as soon as it safe to do so.

  3. Harnesses are available that can be used with certain car safety seats.

  4. Special needs car seats are available that offer additional features that may prevent escape.

  5. Use a Social Story™ to teach car safety rules.

 

May have little/no understanding of fire safety.

 

  1. Always supervise around open fires.

  2. Use a Social Story™ to teach fire safety and what to do in the event of a fire.

  3. Use DVDs/Books with their favourite characters to teach fire safety and what to do in the event of a fire.

  4. A Social Skills group can help teach fire safety.  This may include role play and responding to different situations.

Contact us:
SHINE for Autism is a registered CIO - Charity number 1185018
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