Ellicott Creek Volunteer Fire Company
The Ellicott Creek Volunteer Fire Company wants everyone in our community to stay safe throughout the summer . The following is some safety tips you can follow to make your summer safe and enjoyable. Share them with your friends and family so you all can have a happy and safe summer. Have a great summer.
Tips to share this summer
With one in five Americans developing skin cancer, childhood education about sun safety is a vital step toward reducing risk and improving public health. Overexposure to the sun's ultraviolet (UV) rays seriously threatens human health. Besides the immediate effect of sunburn, over time excess UV radiation can cause skin cancer, eye damage, immune system suppression, and premature aging. About 23 percent of lifetime sun exposure occurs before the age of 18. Learning about sun safety and dangers of sunbeds is the key to reducing the risk of future health problems.
According to NSC Injury Facts, 3,858 people died in 2008 due to drowning, including swimming and water transport accidents. More than one in five drowning victims are children 14-years-old and younger, and for every child who dies from drowning, another four receive emergency department care for nonfatal submersion injuries. Most drowning and near-drowning incidents happen when a child falls into a pool or is left alone in the bathtub.
Surviving the Hot Weather
Heat illness includes a range of disorders that result when your body is exposed to more heat than it can handle. Anybody not accustomed to hot weather is at risk of suffering from heatstroke (the most serious and life-threatening heat-related illness) as well as heat exhaustion and heat cramps.
Heatstroke in vehicles has become an increasing issue for young children, causing 43 fatalities in 2013, according to SafeKids. Children overheat three to five times faster than adults, making hot cars lethal in just minutes. Take a second to read more on this growing issue and protect your children.
In 2010, there were 10,228 deaths in crashes involving a driver with a BAC of .08 or higher – 31 percent of all traffic fatalities for the year. While it is illegal to drive with a .08 blood alcohol concentration in all 50 states, driving ability can be impaired below the legal limit too. If you are drinking, do not drive. If you plan to drink, designate a non-drinking driver.
• No matter how long you plan on being out, wear sunscreen with an SPF of at least 15
• Take water breaks every 15 minutes when working or playing outdoors - try to set up a shady or air conditioned recovery area
• Eat small, light meals before outdoor activity
• Wear eye and ear protection, and appropriate shoes and clothing when operating a lawnmower or working nearby
• Always lock the doors of your car after you have exited - children may get into cars on their own and become trapped inside
Spot outdoor working hazards
According to the CDC, people who work outdoors are exposed to biological and physical hazards. Employers should educate their employees on how to both identify and prevent future hazards from occurring.
Review OSHA's Heat Campaign
Every year, thousands of workers become sick or even die from exposure to heat. Check out these OSHA heat safety resources to stay safe.
Can't take the heat?
Neither can your children
Dozens of children die as a result of high temperatures inside of cars. Read our new press release to learn about the issue and tips to prevent these needless tragedies.
Keep young workers safe
Young workers under the age of 24 are more prone to work-related injuries than any other age group. This can be caused from the environment, inexperience and lack of safety training. The CDC offers more information on this issue.
©Jupiter Images, 2009
When it comes to camping safety, insect repellent and sunscreen are two important items to pack.
Enjoy the great outdoors and stay safe with these easy-to-follow camping safety guidelines.
It's important to remember camping safety, whether it's a weekend with the kids or an overnight fishing trip with friends. Planning ahead and bringing the right supplies can help ensure that a camping trip is both enjoyable and safe. This article covers basic camping safety tips, including how to prepare for a trip and unexpected dangers that campers might encounter.
Planning for Camping Safety
The most important camping safety tip is to plan ahead. Campers might encounter a number of dangers including sudden changes in weather conditions, insect bites and stings, animal attacks and getting lost, to name just a few.
First, make sure to understand the campers and their outdoor skill level. Don't include a strenuous hike on the camping trip if fellow campers are in poor physical shape or have never hiked before. Make sure that at least one person in the group has been trained in first aid. That way, help is near in case anyone is injured. The American Red Cross offers first aid and safety courses. And of course, put that person in charge of preparing and bringing a good first aid kit.
To ensure camping safety, get thorough information about the chosen camping spot. For national or state parks, contact the park ranger in advance for information or visit the park's Web site. Information on the park's campsites, trails, remote areas, wildlife, weather and potential dangers is necessary for a safe camping trip.
Make sure all equipment is safe and durable. Setting up the campsite before the actual trip allows campers to discover potential problems with the tent or cooking equipment - and leaves enough time to fix the problems. For example, set up the tent, then turn the lawn sprinkler on it - this will help identify leaks to seal and weatherproof. The USDA Food Safety and Inspection Service recommends assembling and lighting the camp stove before using it on the trip.
Safe Camping Clothes
Since weather conditions can change suddenly, dress in layers. Adding or subtracting pieces of clothing is easy if the temperature rises or falls unexpectedly. Bring rain jackets even if rain is not in the forecast for the trip. A hat or cap can help protect from the glaring sun and keep the head and ears warm in cold weather.
Remember to wear comfortable shoes and to bring a spare pair in case the first pair gets wet. The same is true for socks - always bring an extra pair or two. If hiking is part of the camping itinerary, bring shoes or socks designed for hiking the terrain you'll encounter. Wearing the wrong type of shoes or socks can lead to fatigue and blistering of the feet.
Camping Food and Water Safety
Bring a generous amount of water on the camping trip - determine out how much will be needed and bring more than enough for drinking and washing up. It's a good idea to bring a mix of bottled water, water filters (for well water) or water purification tablets. Water purification tablets can make creek water safe to drink by eliminating parasites and bacteria that might be contaminating it. However, according to the USDA Food Safety and Inspection Service, the best way to ensure safe drinking water is by boiling it. Keep in mind that water's boiling point lowers at higher elevations and that water should be boiled for several minutes at minimum.
When packing food for a camping trip, it's a good idea to bring a little more than is necessary. Try to pack foods that don't need refrigeration or cooking, such as trail mix, fruit, granola bars, peanut butter, beef jerky, canned tuna and dehydrated meals.
However, part of the fun of camping can be cooking outdoors. When camping with foods that must remain cold, such as raw meats or eggs, travel with a foam chest or steel cooler packed with ice or frozen gel packs. Keep foods packaged properly to prevent leakage and cross-contamination.
Prescriptions and First Aid
Those who wear prescription glasses or contact lenses should bring a spare pair in case the first pair is lost or damaged. Anyone taking prescription medications should remember to bring enough along in case the trip has to be extended due to an emergency or weather conditions.
Another essential camping safety item is a first aid kit that contains an assortment of bandages, wound dressings, sterile gauze pads, cloth adhesive tape, Band-aids, splinting materials, a cold pack, a thermometer, non-latex gloves, safety pins, scissors, tweezers, topical antibiotic cream, oral antihistamine (for allergic reactions or rashes associated with poison ivy or insect bites), 1 percent hydrocortisone cream (for itching), alcohol pads and pain relievers (such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen).
Fully equipped kits are available online from the American Red Cross Store.
Other Camping Safety Supplies
Camping safety supplies also include items to help prevent each camper from getting lost, like a map of the camping area, a compass and a flashlight. A hand-crank flashlight is a better option than a battery-powered one.
Camping safety experts recommend bringing a wide range of other supplies including a pocket knife, nylon filament, a folding saw, candles, matches in a waterproof container, sunscreen, insect repellant, a cell phone or walkie-talkie set, duct tape, foil (to use as a signaling device or as a cup), nylon rope, a small mirror (to use as a signaling device), a radio (with extra batteries), sunglasses and liquid antiseptic soap.
Camping Safety and Weather
Weather can wreak havoc on a camping trip. Camping safety can be jeopardized by sudden changes in temperature and violent storms. Campers should make sure they have a way to monitor weather conditions in the area. Always avoid dangerous conditions as much as possible For example, if the temperature skyrockets during a camping trip, perform activities early in the morning or in the evening, when temperatures are a bit cooler. Avoid the sun's heat by staying in shady areas. Wear sunscreen and proper clothing to protect the body.
Lightning is another danger that can strike campers - literally. According to the Boy Scouts of America, campers in an exposed area should go away from the direction of the storm to a lower elevation and squat close to the ground with their feet close together. Don't take cover under an isolated tree or under a tree that is much taller than other trees nearby. Stay away from water, metal objects, and other substances that will conduct electricity long distances.
Camping Safety and Fire Prevention
Smokey Bear has been around for since 1944, and every camper should visit his Web site to pick up last-minute safety tips. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) also maintains information about camping safety, and recommends Smokey's Seven Campfire Safety Tips.
When building a campfire, dig a small pit or use a campfire pit away from overhanging branches. The pit should be encircled with rocks or have a metal fire ring. Never leave a campfire unattended, and always keep a bucket of water nearby in case the fire gets out of control. Make sure that any cooking equipment used over the campfire is fireproof, and put out the fire completely before leaving the campsite.
Camping Safety and Hiking
Getting lost while hiking is another camping safety concern. Make sure everyone in the camping party has a map of the area and knows how to read it. Each person should carry a compass and cell phone or walkie-talkie, in case the group gets split up. Whistles can also help lost campers find each other or find help.
Other Camping Safety Hazards
Depending on the campsite location, be alert for a number of camping safety hazards. These include possible forest fires, signs of dangerous animals or insects (for example, bears or ticks), and poisonous plants like poison ivy and poison oak.
There are many other hazards campers may face. The best way to ensure camping safety is to thoroughly research the camping area before setting out for a trip, and pack the essential items needed to deal with potential emergencies.
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• What kinds of emergencies can happen while camping?
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