Summer is finally here, and that means everyone is ready to have a fantastic time outdoors with friends and family. It’s important to remember, however, that summer often brings some activities that require extra attention to safety. We’re not trying to be fuddy-duddies here, but we’ve seen plenty of injuries to understand the reasons why you should be exercising caution in the midst of all the fun.
To that end, we’ve decided to provide you with a quick overview of what to look out for over the summer to ensure the safety of yourself and your loved ones.
Even on days where it’s not scorching outside, you must stay aware of the sun’s effects. Sunshine provides necessary vitamin D, but if you’re not careful, the sun can cause damage ranging from sunburns to skin cancer. It’s best to avoid exposure to direct sunlight between the hours of 10 am and 4 pm, and when you do spend time in the sun, make sure you wear protective clothing and sunblock.
Knowing the basics of the UV, or ultraviolet, index can help you make the right decision about your outdoor activities, amount of protective clothing, or reapplication of sunscreen. If the UV index is rated as “moderate” or higher, it’s a smart idea to bring some extra protective clothing or make sure whatever activity you’re planning has at least some opportunities to seek shady relief from the sun.
Being out in the heat for an extended period of time can be very dangerous, especially for children and the elderly. Heat exhaustion causes many hospitalizations and deaths every year, even in climates where the temperature doesn’t get out of control. If you’re going to be out in the sun, be sure to stay hydrated and take breaks in the shade whenever possible.
An estimated 75% of Americans are considered chronically dehydrated. Even a very slight drop in hydration levels can cause headache, nausea, irritability, fatigue, and other issues. To stay hydrated, plan on drinking 1-2 ounces of water for each pound of body weight every day. And when you’re engaging in extra activity, like a long bike ride or a hike, check out this calculation to determine how much extra water you should consume.
Summer is a great time to, pardon the pun, fire up the ol’ campfire. Even a backyard makes a great place to relax at night and roast marshmallows. No matter where you decide to build your campfire, you need to exercise caution around it to ensure that no one gets burned and that nothing unintentionally catches on fire. Also, don’t forget to snuff out the fire completely before abandoning it.
With Colorado’s dry climate, and this year’s especially dry summer, wildfires are a real risk. Make sure to pay attention to all posted warnings, and never, ever build a fire in a prohibited area. Campgrounds, national parks, and forests will clearly demarcate and announce fire restrictions – make sure to do your homework before you head out for your camping trip.
Most fireworks are illegal in Colorado, but that never stops people from using them anyway. The best way to stay safe is to avoid their use altogether, but if you or anyone you know decide to risk it, be sure that everyone stays at a safe distance once one is lit. Also, remember that bottle rocket fights are only fun until someone gets shot in the face – which happens more than you think!
Taking the precautions above will help prevent accidents and injuries from happening, but if you are injured by the negligence of another this summer, you may have a valid personal injury case. Reach out to the professionals at Mintz Law Firm and we’ll provide you with a free case evaluation.