When you think of summertime, beaches, grilling and fireworks all come to mind. What doesn’t come to mind are the dangers lurking behind each of these activities. Don’t become a statistic! Read the tips below to ensure that your summer fun activities go off without a hitch.
As the weather gets warmer and daylight lasts longer, kids will be spending more and more time outside riding their bikes. According to Safe Kids.org, child bicycling deaths increase as much as 45 percent above the normal monthly average during the summer months. It’s important that children wear a helmet every time they ride their bike and that the helmet is not able to rock side to side.
Another key to biking safety is to ensure children are riding in appropriate locations during proper weather conditions. Kids under the age of 10 should ride only on sidewalks and paths. More children ages 5 to 14 go to the Emergency Room for injuries associated with bicycles more than with any other sport. If older adults and children wish to ride on the street, they must learn and obey all rules of the road. Biking when it is foggy or when it is dark increases the likelihood of an accident. Bicyclists should wear clothing that is very visible and that has retro-reflective material and bikes should also be equipped with reflective materials.
There may be a debate over the superiority of a charcoal grill versus a gas grill, but there is a clear consensus on the best ways to keep your family safe around grills. According to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), children under five account for approximate 22 percent of burn injuries involving grills, which is why you must always make sure children and pets are kept away from the grill at all times, and never leave the grill unattended. Accidents are sometimes unavoidable, as a young mother discovered several months ago when her child ran into their grill while playing in the yard and received multiple lacerations to his face. Because of the panic and excitement, the mother failed to mention to the 9-1-1 call takers that her son had a fatal latex allergy. Luckily she had created a Smart911 Safety Profile before the accident and included that allergy in the profile. The first responders were notified of the child's allergy before arriving on scene so they could respond quickly and accurately.
The NFPA reported that there were 8,500 grill fires in 2010. Propane and charcoal grills should only be used outside, and they should be placed away from your house, deck railings, leaves and branches to avoid the spread of fire. If you are using a propane grill, check for gas leaks by applying soapy water to the hose. If there is a leak, bubbles will appear. Do not use the tank or grill until the hose is replaced. If you are using a charcoal grill, only use charcoal starter fluid. Never use gasoline, kerosene, or other highly volatile fluids as a starter because they can explode.
Swimming and summertime go hand in hand and make sure being a pool owner and CPR certified go hand in hand as well. The Centers for Disease Control reports that accidental drownings are one of the leading causes of death among infants. A few days ago in Florida, a 2-year-old girl fell into a backyard swimming pool when she crawled through a doggie door on the back of a house. CPR is what saved this young girls life but a lack of barriers is what contributed to this accident. However, lack of swimming ability, lack of close supervision and failure to wear a life jacket are also common causes to swimming accidents. By providing swimming lessons to children as young a six months old, supervising children whenever they are near water and wearing life jackets, you can go a long way in keeping your family safe this summer.
Our goal isn’t to scare you into spending your summer indoors. Rather, we want to keep you vigilant to ensure your summer fun isn’t interrupted by any of these common mishaps. Regardless of how you spend your summer, one of the best things you can do to ensure their safety is to create a Smart911 Safety Profile at www.smart911.com. Over 240 million 9-1-1 calls are made each year and now you can prepare in case you need to make one of those calls at www.smart911.com.
You can also download our ebook 5 Smart Tips for a Safe Summer