Summer Safety Tips
Summer is here and many people are taking advantage of the opportunity to get outside and participate in activities such as camping, road trips, and playgrounds. Children in particular are able to partake in summer fun since school is out. It’s our job as parents to make sure our children are safe while partaking in summer activities and we can reduce the risk of injury to ourselves and our children by following some simple safety guidelines.
Summer Safety Guidelines
Playing Outside is a wonderful way to have fun and get some exercise but following some safety tips can help prevent injuries. Outdoor safety tips:
- Don’t forget to wear a helmet every time you ride bikes or use skates or skateboards.
- Bike riders under the age of ten should only bike on bike paths or the sidewalk if necessary; they simply do not possess the skills to navigate traffic.
- Climbing trees, swinging on tire swings, and playing in tree houses is a cherished summer tradition but falling from a tree can cause serious injuries. Make sure the tree house and tire swing are no higher than ten feet in the air and encourage children not to climb to the top of the tallest trees. A fall will be less serious if the ground underneath a tree house, swing, or other play equipment is softened with a 12 inch layer of wood chips or mulch.
- Backyard trampolines can cause many injuries from flying off onto the ground to getting a leg or foot caught in the coils. The bottom line is that trampolines are not safe unless the coils are covered and there is a safety net attached all the way around.
- Make sure your children are not playing close to a street and teach them to never run after a ball or toy that has rolled into the street.
- Set strict limits about where your children are allowed to ride bikes and play outside. Always know where they are and who they are with.
- Sun feels great until you’ve had too much. Use these sunshine safety tips to avoid a sunburn or heatstroke:
- Since the sun is the strongest between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m., limit the amount of time you spend outside during these hours.
- Apply sunscreen with an SPF of at least 15 on yourself and 30 on your children about 30 minutes before heading outside. Be sure to reapply the sunscreen every two hours and after swimming or sweating. Remember that even if it’s cloudy, you should use sunscreen.
- To avoid heatstroke and dehydration, be sure everyone drinks plenty of water.
- On hot days, be careful to limit intense physical activity outside.
- Be aware that cars can reach very high temperatures in the sun even if it’s only 65 degrees outside. NEVER leave your child or pet alone in the car, even for a minute.
- Always lock your car doors and keep keys away from children who could climb in the car unbeknownst to you, become trapped and overheat.
Swimming Safety Tips:
- If there are ever children around, a backyard pool should be surrounded on all sides by a four feet high fence with a self-closing gate.
- Children under the age of 12 should only be allowed to use the pool if an adult is watching them carefully without distraction and within arm’s reach.
- Parents should watch for signs of drowning such as the inability to speak and head barely above water.
Fireworks are fun to watch from afar but they can be very dangerous when not lit carefully. Here are some fireworks safety tips:
- Even sparklers, which are commonly thought of as “safe” for kids, can reach temperatures of 2000 degrees F and easily ignite clothing.
- Adult supervision cannot prevent all fireworks injuries.
- Even if you do not let your child play with fireworks, he can be injured by someone else who lets him.
- The best and only safe way to enjoy fireworks is to attend a public display by professionals.
- Window Safety Tips:
- If you leave windows open during the summer, remember that your little one could fall through the screen. Use window stops to prevent children from opening windows all the way and install window guards on all second story windows.
- Children can climb on furniture to reach windows so keep all furniture pushed away from windows.
Other Summer Safety Tips:
- Do not mow your lawn while children are outside playing as they could be hit with a rock or stick thrown by the mower.
- Keep lawn equipment locked up and away from children.
- Grill outside and away from the house.
- Check your yard for poisonous plants and insects and remove any if possible.
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