Summer Safety Tips
With summer quickly approaching, now seems a good time to post some very important summer safety tips for all ages. Summer tends to be a time of having fun in places away from home, and perhaps with a more relaxed attitude, because we are on holiday. However, it is precisley at these times that we need to be on higher alert for all potentially dangerous situations. Let's start with the kiddies. As adults we are responsible for children's welfare. So it's up to Mom and Dad to safeguard the young ones from many summer-time dangers.
- Water Safety: It only takes seconds to minutes to drown in water. If children can’t swim they should wear life jackets in any water that can get deep. Kids who are going to around water regularly should take swimming lessons so they practice how to breath and move in the water. Be very aware that back yard pools are extremely facsinating to toddlers. A vigilant watch must be in effect at all times. And when swimming in open water everybody needs a buddy!
- Life Jackets: Everyone in a boat should wear a life jacket. Especially if you are boating with kids. Here is a link to great blogsite with extensive tips on summer boat-preparedness and safety: http://www.ramblingfisherman.com/2011/04/prepare-your-boat-for-battle/
- Child-proof Doors and Windows: Homes with infants and toddlers must be child-proofed. This includes always locking doors and windows to dangerous areas like pools or balconies.
- Back in when you park your car: The police here recommend this simple tip to help prevent accidentally hitting small children when backing out of a driveway. You’ll have a good view of what is going on to safely back in and park. When you are leaving – you drive forward with a good view. Back in to park then forward out when you leave. Think about doing this when you park at a school or daycare or any homes with kids around.
- First Aid: Take first aid and CPR training and have a first aid kit. When accidents can’t be prevented, you may know something that could save a life!
- Sun Protection:And don't forget to slather on the sunscreen. Gone are the carefree days when we enjoyed an undamaged ozone layer. For babies under 6 months old, the best practice is to keep them fully covered with light-weight clothing and brimmed hats. If they are exposed to the sun apply at least SPF 15 lighty to their skin. If they should get a bit red, apply cool cloths to the affected area. For older kids and adults:
-The first and best line of defense against harmful ultraviolet radiation (UVR) exposure is covering up. Wear a hat with a three-inch brim or a bill facing forward, sunglasses (look for sunglasses that provide 97% -100% protection against both UVA and UVB rays), and cotton clothing with a tight weave.
-Stay in the shade whenever possible, and limit sun exposure during the peak intensity hours - between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m.
-On both sunny and cloudy days use a sunscreen with an SPF of 15 or greater that protects against UVA and UVB rays.
-Be sure to apply enough sunscreen - about one ounce per sitting for a young adult.
-Reapply sunscreen every two hours, or after swimming or sweating.
-Use extra caution near water, sand and even snow, they reflect UV rays and may result in sunburn faster.
Amusement Parks tend to be a big attraction for all ages. There are plenty of opportunties in the summer months to make a trip to have some fun, or even run across a county fair on a road trip. Here are some safety tips from the BCSA - The BC Safety Authority - keep them in mind when going on a ride:
Follow the rules: The rules of operation, and any age, height or weight restrictions are posted at every ride. Please read and follow them – they are there for your safety.
Stay seated and hold on: Remain seated for the duration of the ride. Your hands are for holding on to the safety bar, handholds, or lap bars during the entire ride. Keep them inside the ride at all times. (That goes for your legs and feet as well.) Never try to open or unfasten the ride restraining device during the ride.
If it's loose, you'll lose it: Do not bring any loose articles – such as purses, bags, cell phones, cameras, backpacks, or jackets – with you on the ride. Chances are you'll lose them. Leave them on the ground with a trusted friend or family member.
Your health comes first: Many rides can aggravate a pre-existing medical condition. If you suffer from motion sickness, seizures, dizziness, have a heart condition, high blood pressure, a neck or back disorder, or if you are pregnant always make sure you read the rider restrictions posted on the ride or ask the operator if you are not sure if the ride will aggravate any medical condition.
It's okay to be scared: Some people – whatever their age – are frightened by rides. If you are a parent, please don't make your child go on a ride if he or she is scared as there have been instances of children attempting to exit rides prematurely. You can also help keep your child safe by following any posted age, height or weight restrictions.
There’s something magical about sitting in front of a fire. Especially during those summer evenings when the stars are out and the air is warm. Whether you enjoy making S’mores or telling ghost stories, outdoor fires are a family-fun way to spend some outside quality time with no TV or electronic devices.
However there are a few safety steps you should remember.
- Try to learn how to properly start a fire, rather than using flammable liquids. NEVER use gasoline, diesel fuel, lighter fluid and other dangerous fuels. If you gather the right types of wood, and use a safer fire-starter your night will be much more safe and fun. (I just learned an easy yet effective firestarter to make. Take a birthday candle and wrap it in wax paper. Roll the ends similar to a piece of candy. Works great. Do not use indoors.)
- Start your fire in a fire pit or ring or approved fire pit designed to have fires.
- You should always have a bucket of water, a shovel, or fire extinguisher near your fire, just in case.
- Be sure your fire isn’t near any low hanging tree branches or shrubs.
- Don’t stack spare firewood too close so that sparks don’t fly into your pile.
- Keep pets away from the fire. Teach your children to stay far enough away from the actual fire to be safe and teach them not to fool around near a fire.
- Keep your fire away from anything flammable, such as dry grass, tents, paper plates and napkins, and camping gear.
Remember not to feed the fire too much too late so when you head in for the night, it won’t be too hard to put it out and it will be safe to leave it alone. Flames can spark up again. The best way to extinguish a fire is to move some of the ashes around, spreading them over a larger surface area and let them cool down for a little bit. Then take a small container of water and gently pour it over the ashes, but monitor it. Don’t just throw some water on it and go to bed because it can flare up in the night.
So keep safety in mind always when you're having fun this summer. On a final note, check out the Health Canda site about summer safety. It's expansive and ends up with a quiz for some fun and extra knowledge. Happy Summer!
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