Safety Tips for Great Outdoors Month

It’s easy to take the outdoors for granted. You can always go outside, right? Unless, of course, it’s too wet. Or too hot. Or too cold. Or too windy. Or…well, you get the point. It seems we often have excuses as to why we are in front of the television rather than in the fresh air. In an effort to get more of us to take advantage of the unique and amazing outdoor opportunities that we have in this country, June has been designated as Great Outdoors Month. There are many benefits to exploring and enjoying outside, but be sure not to throw caution to the wind. The month’s events vary by state, but some of the more widely celebrated are American Hiking Society’s National Trails Day, National Fishing and Boating Week, National Get Outdoors Day, National Marina Day, National Wildlife Federation’s Great American Campout, and Get Into Your Sanctuary Day. Whether you participate in these activities or strike out on your own, it’s important to do so safely. When it comes to the sun, remember to wear sunglasses and use a water-resistant broad spectrum (UVA/UVB) sunscreen with an SPF of at least 30. Be sure to reapply every two hours and after swimming. Staying hydrated is key in high temperatures in order to avoid heat exhaustion and heat stroke (which can be deadly). If your plans involve a campfire, choose your site wisely and make it far away from power lines, overhanging limbs, buildings, cars, shrubbery, dry grass, and leaves. Build your fire in a contained unit — not directly on the ground – and be sure there is at least ten feet of gravel or dirt in all directions. Don’t use flammable liquids to ignite or keep your fire burning, never leave it unattended, and drown it with water when putting it out. If you don’t have water, mix in soil or sand and keep stirring until everything is cool. Whether at a pool or the beach, anyone who goes swimming should do so with a buddy. It doesn’t take much depth or time for children to drown, and even the strongest adult swimmer can run into trouble. Never dive into water unless you have checked for underwater objects and for appropriate depth. If you go boating, obey all speed limits and navigational buoys. Besides being dangerous, it is also against the law to operate a boat or vessel while intoxicated or under the influence of any other substance that impairs one’s driving ability. Most importantly, personal flotation devices (PFDs) should be worn at all times by everyone onboard. If you try out hiking, don’t rely solely on GPS technology. Bring along a map and a compass as a backup, as well as a first-aid kit, a whistle, and a multi-purpose tool. Always stay on any designated trails, and do not approach wildlife. Mountain bikers should always wear a helmet, keep their speed under control, and not ride beyond their abilities. Outdoor recreation contributes to healthier lifestyles, supports conservation efforts, and boosts local economies. Celebrate our natural treasures safely. If you have any questions about this topic, you can find out more by discussing it with one of the personal injury attorneys at the Johnson Law Firm. We have years of experience helping people and we can help you. Our knowledgeable legal team will work closely with you every step of the way and will fight hard to get you the compensation you deserve. Based in Pikeville, KY, we proudly serve communities throughout the Bluegrass State. Contact us by calling 606-437-4488 or filling out our online form.

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