Summer Safety Tips – Beat the Heat!
With the beginning of summer, inevitably there will be increased heat…and with that heat often comes heat exhaustion, or in more extreme cases, heat stroke. For those hotter days this summer, keep the following summer safety tips in mind:
- Drink plenty of water before and during any hard or strenuous work and/or recreational activity in the heat. You’ll need to drink more water than your thirst indicates. Take frequent small drinks, which are more effective than gulping down large amounts at once.
- Whenever possible, schedule heavier work/play for cooler hours of the day, such as early morning or late evening. Minimize your exposure when the sun’s rays are the strongest, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
- Never leave children or pets alone in the car during summer days – even for a few minutes, with the windows rolled down. A stopped car can heat up quickly on sunny days, even when it seems cooler outside.
- Use UV protective sunscreens with a protection factor of at least 15 whenever you are in the sun for long periods. Even on cloudier days, UV rays can get through. Wide brimmed hats and wrap-around sunglasses are also helpful protection from the sun. Infants under 6 months old should be kept out of direct sunlight altogether.
Each year, approximately 8,800 home fires and over 16,000 emergency visits happen due to BBQ grilling. Propane grills accounted for 82% of those accidents. The NFPA has a number of grilling safety tips at their website, here: http://www.nfpa.org/safety-information/for-consumers/outdoors/grilling. Some of these helpful tips include:
- Position your grill well away from siding, deck railings and out from under eaves and overhanging branches.
- Keep children and pets away from grill area - declare a three-foot "safe zone" around the grill.
- Use long-handled grilling tools to give the chef plenty of clearance from heat and flames while grilling.
- Periodically remove grease or fat buildup in trays below grill, so it can not be ignited by a hot grill.
- Check your gas cylinder hose for leaks before using it for the first time each year.
- If the gas is on but there is no ignition, turn off the BBQ and allow gas to dissipate at least 5 minutes before attempting to ignite again.
- When done, turn off the propane connection before the burners, to prevent excess gas from leaking out.