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Surviving summer at Seymour

Summer is approaching, from barbecuing to boating, the correct safety precautions should be taken for any outdoor and even indoor activity. Staying safe is a number one priority for summer activities and higher temperatures. (U.S. Air Force Photo Illustration by Airman 1st Class Miranda Loera)

Summer is approaching, from barbecuing to boating, the correct safety precautions should be taken for any outdoor and even indoor activity. Staying safe is a number one priority for summer activities and higher temperatures. (U.S. Air Force Photo Illustration by Airman 1st Class Miranda Loera)

SEYMOUR JOHNSON AIR FORCE BASE, N.C. --

Summer has quickly approached; kids are out of school, pools are open, grills are out and temperatures are rising. With the influx of summer activities and higher temperatures, Staff Sgt. Dylan Gaissert, 4th Fighter Wing Safety occupational safety technician, has some tips and ways to stay safe during the hotter days.

SWIMMING

With pools, lakes and beaches becoming an escape for people from the heat, the water can be a safe but also dangerous place to be. Here are some tips for staying afloat in the water:

·     Avoid swift water. If caught in the current, swim along it and head toward the shore.

·     Observe warning signs.

·     Do not swim while under the influence of alcohol or any other drugs

·     Children should never swim without an adult present

·     Do not swim during severe weather and thunderstorms

·     Swim where lifeguards are present and wear a lifejacket 

·     Know the depth of the water before leaping in

Rip currents are also a big concern in large bodies of water with breaking waves. If caught in a current use these tips to get to safety:

·     Calmly float or tread water to save energy. 

·     Swim parallel or diagonal in the direction of the shore

·     Do not swim back to shore directly against a rip current since this can cause exhaustion and drowning

HEAT INJURIES

·     Heat Stroke: When the body’s cooling system stops working and core temperature rises to a dangerous level.

·     Symptoms:

¨    Hot, dry and red skin

¨    Weak, but rapid pulse

¨    Shallow breathing

·     Treatment:

¨    Reduce body temperature by cooling the body

¨    Apply water or cool air to the neck, groin or armpits to accelerate cooling

¨    Seek medical attention immediately

·     Prevention:

¨    Stay hydrated before, during and after exercise

¨    Acclimate to the environment to allow your body to adapt to the heat

¨    Avoid exercising at the hottest time of the day

·     Heat Cramps: Painful cramps in the stomach, arm and leg muscles

·     Treatment:

¨    Get out of heat and into the shade

¨    Stay hydrated

¨    Stretch the muscle(s)

·     Prevention:

¨    Same as heat stroke

·     Heat Exhaustion:Headache, nausea and/or dizziness due to the loss of salt and water through sweat.

·     Treatment:

¨    Hydrate and find shade

¨    Loosen clothing and apply a wet, cold compress

¨    Stop and rest

·     Prevention:

¨    Same as heat stroke

BOATING

In 2016, the Coast Guard counted 4,463 accidents that involved 701 deaths, 2,903 injuries and approximately $49 million dollars of damage to property as a result of recreational boating accidents. While on the water, take these precautions to ensure safety:

·     Know the boat manufacturer’s capacity limit to ensure a proper load weight

·     Have situational awareness of other boats and objects on the water

·     Be cognizant of the weather

·     Never operate a boat under the influence of alcohol and drugs

·     Review and obey boating laws 

GRILLING

According to the U.S. Fire Administration, about 5,700 grill fires take place on residential property per year. 

·     Keep grill at least 10 feet from other buildings

·     No pets or children around grills

·     Keep a fire extinguisher or bucket of water beside grill in case of a fire

·     Ensure the grill burner controls are turned off and keep the cylinder valve closed when not in use 

·     Inspect and clean grills after every use 

·     Overloading grill with too much meat can cause excess grease to fall on fire causing it to rise

Here are some recommendations on what NOT to do with a propane grill:

·     Do not smoke while handling the grill

·     Do not use matches or lighters to check for leaks

·     Do not bring cylinders indoors or into an enclosed space

Charcoal grills produce carbon monoxide when burned. This is a colorless odor-free gas that can build up to toxic levels in an enclosed environment. To reduce any possible fatalities, follow the listed safety tips:

·     Do not burn charcoal indoors even if there is ventilation.

·     Do not store the grill indoors until charcoal is completely extinguished

·     If possible, allow ashes and coals to cool for several days.

·     Do not use flammable liquids to start the fire or relight the coals.

These safety tips are offered to make summer vacations a safe and happy one.

For more information on how to stay safe during the summer, visit http://www.safety.af.mil//or contact your local safety office. 

 

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