Summertime may be fun, but don’t forget some basic safety tips
If you are like many people, you may find summertime to be a time of relaxation, socializing with friends, holding barbecues, swimming, or taking vacations. All of these things are great fun, but also remember to look out for some of the health and safety issues that are most common in the summer.
1. Heat exhaustion and heat stroke
Heat exhaustion, heat stroke, and other heat-related problems can be serious to a person’s health. You should be aware of the signs of heat exhaustion and heat stroke, so that you can recognize them in yourself or in others. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention provides the Warning Signs and Symptoms of Heat Related Illness. Know the signs, and know your limits of how much time you can spend in the heat and sun.
2. Holidays and parties
Memorial Day, the Fourth of July, and Labor Day are long holiday weekends that are notorious for drinking-and-driving accidents. Be sure you don’t drink and drive, or ride with anyone who has been drinking. Remember that highway accidents and fatalities are often highest in the summer months. Do your part to keep yourself, your loved ones, and fellow drivers safe. For more information about alcohol and safety, visit the CDC’s Alcohol and Public Health page.
3. Barbecue safety
People love summer barbecues, but be sure you know how to handle your grill safely. Over the summer months, emergency rooms see many burns and other grill-related accidents. Some causes of accidents include gas leaks, incorrect use of starter fluid, placing the grill too close to flammable items, and not attending to the grill. The National Fire Protection Association provides tips on outdoor grill safety.
4. Swimming and boating safety
The water can be a great way to cool off and have fun in the summer months, but there are dangers too. A few swimming and boating tips:
- Never swim alone
- Don’t swim or boat while under the influence of alcohol
- Swim where lifeguards are present and obey all rules
- Always wear life jackets when boating
- Observe all boat safety rules
- Watch children carefully, even if lifeguards are present. Even children who are good swimmers can run into trouble
The American Red Cross provides a comprehensive list of water safety tips. Take a moment to refresh yourself on these rules before your summer swimming activities.
5. Road trips
Taking a road trip can be loads of fun, but remember, summer traffic can be dangerous. Watch out for aggressive drivers and distracted drivers. Protect yourself and your family by driving carefully, putting away your cell phone while driving, staying alert and awake, using the correct car seats for children, and wearing your safety belts. And of course, never drink and drive. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has a website devoted to driving safety. Even if you are a seasoned driver, it doesn’t hurt to review the NHTSA advice.
With these tips in mind, we wish you a fun and happy summer season! Keep cool and enjoy!
This article was prepared by the Harris School of Business. The Harris School is a career-focused school dedicated to training students in the field of healthcare and allied health. Our training programs include career paths such as medical assistant, massage therapist, and medical biller/coder. Our free articles on healthcare and public health issues are meant for our students and the public to enjoy. For more information about our school, fill out our information form.