5 OUTDOOR SAFETY
TIPS FOR THIS SUMMER
While summer is normally a time for leisure and vacationing, it shouldn't mean letting our guard down when it comes to various dangers.
Skin cancer, water safety and protection from severe weather are some areas we should be paying attention to. Below are some tips for handling some summer dangers.
Skin burn and skin cancer are serious dangers to look out for during the summer. Stay out of the sun during some hours and properly protect your skin with to guard against skin cancer.
Also beware of heat exhaustion when the weather is particularly hot. In times like this, drink lots of fluid. However, people who have epilepsy or heart, kidney, or liver disease; are on fluid-restrictive diets; or have a problem with fluid retention should consult a doctor before increasing liquid intake.
Avoid too much physical activity, spending too much time in the sun or staying too long in an overheated place as these can cause heat-related illnesses. Know the symptoms of heat disorders and overexposure to the sun, and be ready to give first aid treatment.
For sunburns, take a shower, using soap, to remove oils that may block pores preventing the body from cooling naturally. If blisters occur, apply dry, sterile dressings and get medical attention. Sunburn symptoms are skin redness and pain, possible swelling, blisters, fever, headaches.
In home swimming pools, prudence is even more necessary since you are the lifeguard, so be careful. One suggestion is to install four-sided isolation fencing around the pool with self-closing and self-latching gates to prevent direct access to the pool from a house and yard.
1. Always wear a bike helmet. Most bike deaths are a result of head injury and helmets can help prevent this. Helmets should sit evenly between the ears and low on the forehead.
2. Ride your bike in a way cars know you are there. Wear bright colors or clothes that reflect light at night so cars, buses, and trucks can see you. Also, get a headlight for the front of your bike and "reflectors" on the front and back of your bike if you ride at night.
3. Follow bike traffic rules. Bikes have to follow the same traffic rules and signs as cars. You must ride in the same direction as the cars are going, ride your bike single-file, signal when you want to stop or turn, look out for holes, wet leaves, or cracks in the street which can make you crash your bike. As well, ride away from the curb in case a car pulls out or someone opens a car door suddenly. For additional information, contact the United States National Highway Traffic Safety Administration hotline at: 1-888-327-4236.
For more food safety information call the toll-free United States Department of Agriculture Meat and Poultry Hotline at 1 (800) 535-4555. (in the US only).
1. Keep disaster supplies at hand.
These include a flashlight with extra batteries, a portable, battery-operated radio and extra batteries, first aid kit and manual, emergency food and water, essential medicines, non-electric can opener, cash and credit cards and sturdy shoes.
2. Check for hazards in the yard.
These can be dead or rotting trees and branches that can fall during a severe thunderstorm and cause injury and damage.
3. Make sure all family members know how to respond after a thunderstorm.
Teach family members how and when to turn off gas, electricity and water and teach kids how and when to call 9-1-1, police, fire department, and which radio station to tune for emergency information.
4. In the case of severe thunderstorms, find a safe place to stay.
A severe thunderstorm watch is issued by the National Weather Service when the weather conditions are such that a severe thunderstorm is likely to develop. This is the time to locate a safe place in the home and tell family members to watch the sky and listen to the radio or television for more information.
A severe thunderstorm warning is issued when a severe thunderstorm has been sighted or indicated by weather radar. At this point, the danger is very serious and everyone should go to a safe place, turn on a battery-operated radio or television, and wait for the "all clear" by the authorities.
5. Lightning is a major threat during a thunderstorm.
If you are caught outdoors, avoid natural lightning rods such as tall, isolated trees in an open area or the top of a hill and metal objects such as wire fences, golf clubs and metal tools.
As well, it is a myth that lightning never strikes twice in the same place. In fact, lightning will strike several times in the same place in the course of one discharge.
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