Fourth of July Safety Tips

Happy Fourth from everyone at Direct Energy! As you head out to celebrate our nation’s birthday with parades, cookouts, swimming, boating or fireworks, keep it a fun, injury-free holiday with these safety tips.

Avoid dehydration and sun exposure
Packing up the family for a fun day outdoors can be a blur—but don’t forget hats and sunscreen! Also, take more water than you think you need. Children and the elderly are especially susceptible to heat-related illness (from heat rash and heat cramps to the more serious heat exhaustion and heat stroke). Know the signs and take common-sense precautions: stay in the shade, use hats and sunscreen, drink enough fluids.

Stay safe around fireworks
Thousands of people end up in the ER every year with injuries from fireworks. Don’t be one of them! If you live in an area where fireworks are legal, follow these firework safety tips from the National Council on Fireworks Safety. Key things to remember: Don’t relight dud fireworks, have a designated shooter, use eye protection, always have water nearby and don’t let kids under 12 use sparklers.

Be alert in and around the water
Beaches, lakes, rivers and pools are extra-crowded on the Fourth—all the more reason to take it slow and play it safe. Here’s some good advice from The American Red Cross:  “Watch out for the dangerous “too’s” – too tired, too cold, too far from safety, too much sun, too much strenuous activity.” Read these American Red Cross water safety tips to learn more about safe swimming, diving, boating, tubing and operating personal watercraft.

Take precautions while grilling and cooking
It’s easy to overlook the fire on a busy holiday, but stay vigilant and take common-sense precautions. Keep the grill away from the house, and keep kids and pets away from the grill! For propane grills, check your hoses and connections.

And finally—don’t take chances with food safety! Follow the USDA Barbeque and Food Safety Guidelines for safe thawing, marinating, cooking, transporting and storing of your holiday dishes. Never partially grill meat or poultry and finish cooking later; keep hot food hot (140° F or warmer) and your food coolers cold. Get the facts by reading “Is It Done Yet?” and watching this Tips for Safe Summer Grilling video.

Do you have more tips to add? Please share them in the comments below. Have a safe, fun, patriotic Fourth of July!

Thanks to Flickr user AddyG