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Posted On: Jul 09, 2009



     Summer's here! As you plan your trips to the beach, into the woods or a park, or just into your own backyard, take time to plan for summer safety. Here are some ways to protect yourself so you can get the most out of your favorite outdoor activities:
Sun Safety
Skin cancer is the most common cancer in the United States. And it can be prevented by taking steps to protect your skin. Remember, the sun's ultraviolet (UV) rays shine down even on cloudy days. So even when the sun seems to be hiding, follow safety measures such as:
  • Wearing sunscreen with a sun protection factor (SPF) of 15 or higher,
  • Applying sunscreen to dry skin 15 to 30 minutes before going outside, again every 2 hours once in the sun, and even more often if you're swimming or sweating,
  • Staying out of the sun from 10 am to 4 pm, when the sun is strongest,
  • Seeking shade when it's available,
  • Covering up as much unprotected skin as possible, and/or
  • Wearing a wide-brimmed hat and sunglasses that block UV rays.
Bug Safety
for most people, insect bites and bee stings aren't dangerous. But for people who are allergic to them, bites and stings can cause a potentially deadly allergic reaction called anaphylactic shock. This must be handled as a medical emergency. When in the woods, wear long sleeves and pants to prevent tick bites. Most tick bites are harmless. But many types of ticks carry and spread Lyme Disease.
Water Safety
Watch your children closely when they're in or around a pool. Before they learn to swim, flotation devices can help them stay above water. Early on, teach them the rules of safe swimming, including no running near a pool and no diving in waters less than five feet deep.
Heat Safety
To avoid heat-related illness, drink plenty of water or liquids with electrolytes. Know the symptoms of heat rash and heat stroke to prevent serious problems. If you have young children, never leave them alone in the car with the windows rolled up.
Travel Safety
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration estimates that 40 percent of run-off-the-road car crashes happen because of driver distractions. These include reading, eating and using a cell phone. Whether you're driving, biking or running, stay focused on the road and be aware of the drivers and conditions around you. Always wear your seatbelt and ask all the passengers in your car to do the same.
Bike Safety
When you're biking, make sure your bike is the right size and always wear a helmet that fits you. For the most protection, use a bike light and wear light-colored clothes.
Don't let the season's dangers spoil your fun in the sun. Plan ahead to stay safe!

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