With the arrival of Memorial Day Weekend, many families will be celebrating the unofficial start of summer by visiting relatives, having cookouts, and participating in outdoor activities. Thomas J. Henry would like to present the following safety tips to help ensure you and your loved ones have a safe and enjoyable Memorial Day Weekend.
- Seatbelts – Not only should seatbelts be worn anytime the vehicle is in operation, but parents should ensure that their children are wearing their seatbelts correctly. While it may be tempting to adjust a seatbelt for comfort on long trips, doing so greatly reduces the seatbelt’s function.
- Designate a Driver – Never drink and drive or travel with a person who has been drinking. Have a designated driver if you are planning to travel home from a cookout or event.
- Maintenance – Check that your vehicle is serviced and ready for the road before going on a long trip. Making sure that a vehicle is up to date on all scheduled maintenance and that tires are at the proper pressure and in good condition can greatly reduce the risk of a crash.
- Fire Safety – Before grilling, be sure that your grill has been properly cleaned and is free of any dust. If you are using a gas grill, check for leaks and loose connections. Always grill in an open area – not in a garage, porch, or other covered or enclosed space.
- Food Safety – Be sure you properly store any food. When grilling, keep any uncooked meats away from other foods to prevent cross-contamination. Thoroughly wash your hands before handling food and after handling raw meat.
- Keep Hydrated – Memorial Day weekend is the first holiday of the summer. When grilling, make sure you are staying hydrated by drinking lots of water.
- Water Safety – Rather visiting a beach, a lake, or a swimming pool, remember to never swim alone. Children should especially be supervised at all times when in or near the water. It only takes seconds for tragedy to happen.
- Boating Safety – Like driving, do not operate a boat while intoxicated. Additionally, do not forgo wearing a life jacket. According to the U.S. Coast Guard, 84 percent of individuals who drown after a boating accident are not wearing life jackets.
- Sun Safety – Apply sunscreen with an SPF of 15 or higher throughout the day to avoid sunburn. Wearing sunglasses and hats can also help prevent eye and corneal damage. Finally, remember to keep hydrated while outdoors.