The Fourth of July is a fun holiday for families, but between fireworks, cookouts, swimming pools and the summer heat, it can also be one of the most dangerous. Stay safe this Fourth of July by taking these precautions before you get outside to celebrate our nation’s independence.
Before purchasing any fireworks, make sure you know all local laws regarding their use. Read all labels and instructions before lighting. Designate an adult to supervise all fireworks and never give fireworks to children. Fireworks should only be used outdoors in a clear and open area away from buildings or overhead structures. Double-check everyone’s clothing to ensure there are no loose items that could catch fire.
Whether you’ll be lounging by a pool or boating on the lake with your family this holiday season, always designate at least one adult to monitor children at all times. Rotate chaperones to keep everyone attentive. Remind both kids and adults that they should never swim alone.
The summer sun can be enjoyable for short periods of time, but ensure that kids take frequent breaks from the heat and drink plenty of water when they’re outside. Apply sunscreen before you even go outside, and reapply every two hours and after sweating or swimming. Pets should always have water dishes available and should never be left in cars or any other area where cool, flowing air is not available. Keep in mind that if concrete is too hot for your hands or feet, it is also too hot for your pet’s paws.
Keep foods fresh
Food is central to any Fourth of July celebration, but open dishes or drinks can sometimes attract bees or wasps. Ensure that food is covered at all times to deter any uninvited insect guests. After meals are done, don’t leave food sitting in the sun all day. Have coolers available for anything that should be refrigerated, like deli meats, cheese or potato salad. Food-borne illnesses can occur when foods like these are left out in high temperatures for over one hour.
Finally, always have a first aid kit handy, whether you keep one in a family bag or in your car. Ensure it is stocked with bandages, pain reliever, gauze, antiseptic wipes and, when possible, an EpiPen for anyone who may have severe allergies.