The summer season has officially started! We spend all year waiting for temperatures to climb well into the double digits so we can spend more time outdoors, soak up the vitamin D, visit family and friends, and try out all the great activities that our beautiful province has to offer. But we also need to stay safe and balance all that fun in the great outdoors with staying injury free. So, we want to take this opportunity to review some common summer safety tips to keep in mind.
Yep, that’s right … hot weather temperatures, right here in NL. Even though we are known for our cooler temperatures, Newfoundland and Labrador can experience some very high temperatures during the summer. During those hot summer days, it’s important to be safe and avoid dampening the fun with heat-related illnesses. Here are some tips to stay safe in that ever-elusive sunlight:
- Regularly check the weather forecast—weather here in NL can be unpredictable, as we all know.
- Stay hydrated by drinking plenty of water regularly throughout the day.
- Limit your exposure to the mid-day sun.
- Always use sunscreen with a SPF of 30 or higher to protect your skin or lounge in the shade rather than direct sun.
- Wear loose-fitting, light-coloured clothing.
- Never leave children or pets in a vehicle unattended.
Finally! The weather is warm, school is out, and residents are planning trips and taking to the open road. Our roads get busier in the summer season, so keep these tips in mind during your road trip getaways:
- More sun means more people are outdoors, so share the road safely with others. Lower your speed in residential areas and be aware of your surroundings. Look twice for motorcycles and other road users.
- Make sure to use extra caution when driving through road construction zones.
- Be well rested before heading out and take frequent breaks on long journeys.
- Keep a well stocked emergency kit in your vehicle.
- Ensure you and your passengers are always wearing seat belts – even if it’s a short trip to the store.
- Always drive with due care and attention. Avoid distractions and never drive impaired.
Many Newfoundlanders and Labradorians love the water. We spend a lot of time during the summer on or near swimming pools, ponds, rivers and the ocean. Water safety is critically important in a province like ours. Sadly, each year, tragic and preventable water-related incidents happen. So please remember these safety tips for your next water adventure:
- Always wear a properly fastened and fitted lifejacket or PFD when you’re on the water.
- Keep an active eye on children when they’re in or even near the water.
- Make sure pools aren’t accessible unless there is responsible adult supervision on deck.
- Always be aware of what conditions are like underfoot when you’re in the water, whether fishing or swimming.
- Always swim with a buddy.
- Water incidents can happen quickly so it is important to be able to respond quickly. Impairment will affect your ability to help yourself or others. Staying sober and diligent while on or near the water is so important.
There are so many fun ways to spend your time in the summer. It’s a great time to get back to outdoor activities that you love or try something new! Just make sure you keep some of these safety practices in mind:
- Always wear a helmet if required, and make sure it is properly fitted and the right one for your activity.
- Be prepared for unexpected events while camping or hiking. Carry a first-aid kit, extra clothing, extra water and let someone know where you’re going and when you’ll be back.
- Never leave a campfire unattended and keep a bucket of water and shovel nearby.
- Remember to turn off your propane tank when you are finished with it.
- Don’t post when you’re away or out of town on social media – it could make your home a target.
- Follow all provincial COVID-19 regulations (as directed by our Chief Medical Officer of Health).
It’s a great time of year to get outside and have fun in the sun (or the rain, drizzle and fog) but recognize that off-the-job safety is just as important as safety at work. Follow these simple safety tips and have a happy, fun-filled and SAFE summer season.
Work safe. Home safe. Every day.