Ahhhhh…. the weather is warming, even if it’s a bit wet. Children are out of school. The pools are open, BBQ grills are hot, and there might even be a trip or two planned. Here’s a few tips to make your summer safer.
POOL & WATER SAFETY
Always be certain that children swim in guarded areas with adult supervision.
If you have YOUNG children and a pool, be certain that ALL DOORS leading out of the home and into the pool area have ADULT latches. Sliding doors are tricky – consider a safety bar that prevents them from opening more than 2″ to avoid a toddler from escaping to the pool, unattended.
AT the beach, no matter what, NEVER let your young children out of view… and within reach. Sudden wave action can easily knock a toddler down and drag them out into the ocean.
If you hear thunder OR SEE LIGHTNING get to shelter immediately… remember the 30 rule: if you see lightning and hear thunder within 30seconds, you can be struck… get indoors, off the beach and away from the pool.
BICYCLES & MOTOR CYCLES
Teach children the rules of the road – especially if they will be riding on streets and highways.
Regularly check the safety and operation of bikes and cycles. Tire pressure, chain guards, steering, wheel mounts need to be inspected and adjusted if necessary.
Riding with a group of people? Ride in line, not side-by-side. Cyclists: obey the rules of the road and be extra cautious in highly populated and traveled vacation towns.
BBQs & OUTDOOR FUN
SUNSCREEN… let me say it again: S-U-N-S-C-R-E-E-N!!! Put it on BEFORE going outside, even if it’s cloudy. BE SURE that kids are properly screened before playing outside… every day, all the time, and without fail. PREVENT FUTURE SKIN CANCER, start early, and often.
BBQs are HOT and much different from indoor cooktops and ranges. Exercise extreme caution when lighting.
Teach children from the time they become mobile onward, that grills can be dangerous and to stay away from them. YES, stay away – grease can splatter and cause permanent disfigurement… they can topple if a child pulls themselves up on them.
ALWAYS take the child indoors with you, no matter “how quick” your trip and NEVER leave the child unattended where there is a HOT GRILL.
Bees, wasps, mosquitos, ants, etc. all can cause severe reactions in both children and adults. Be aware of anaphylaxis reactions which may include difficulty in breathing, acute swelling of tongue and or mouth/nasal passages, and visible welts. If you see those severe reactions, get the person to the emergency ward of a hospital without delay.
Have your vehicle inspected by your local mechanic to ensure its reliability. Fluids, belts, tires, A/C, etc. should all be inspected and maintenance performed. Even a trip of 60 miles to the local beach can become a nightmare if a breakdown could have been prevented.
ALWAYS pack sunscreen, Band-Aids, disinfectant ointment (Neosporin or other), and extra bottles of water for your trip. In our household, we have a “ready travel kit” and always throw in 2 extra bottles of water per person traveling… just in case.
Leave home and your point of departure with a FULL TANK OF GAS. I remember the time I drove to our home in Cape May NJ and had half a tank for my return trip. I didn’t fill up, planning to do so when I got closer to PA. Unfortunately, I got caught in an a-typical 6 hours delay due to a major accident. It was HOT, the A/C was on high, and I sat there watching the needle drop precipitously. The angst can be prevented by having a full tank.
Going on vacation? Remember this rule: anything that goes “wrong” should be treated as an adventure, not a catastrophe. Seriously, if everyone is safe and healthy, nothing else matters. We made a trip that was interrupted by a hurricane. We made it an adventure and still laugh about the “evacuation”.
HAVE FUN friends and Neighbors. It’s summer. Be safe.